On 25-26 March 2015 the 10th annual public conference of the European Technology Platform for the Future of Textiles and Clothing (Textile ETP) took place in Brussels. Over 150 participants from 20 countries witnessed a very broad overview of key textile technologies which moved from research labs into industrial practice over the last 10 years or which are expected to do so over the next 10 years. It was an impressive demonstration of how innovative, high-tech and diversified the EU textile and clothing sector has become.
Alluding to these developments in his opening address, Paolo Canonico, President of the Technology Platform, stated “Few people would have predicted this incredible transformation of our sector back in 2004, the year when the Textile ETP was launched and incidentally also the year when the last textile import quotas were phased out. While it is true that we lost many companies and industry jobs in the following 5-year period, the companies that have successfully navigated this phase are more competitive and resilient than before. While holding on to the majority of its turnover, the industry has increased its productivity by almost 50 % and extra-EU exports have risen by one third to over €42 billion during the last 10 years.”