The US Agency for International Development (USAID)-funded West Africa Trade & Investment Hub (Trade Hub) will utilize Women’s Global Development and Prosperity (W-GDP) funds to establish a model factory with Ethical Apparel Africa and Maagrace Garment Industries in Ghana’s eastern region. This partnership will accelerate women’s economic empowerment in apparel manufacturing.
The project will set high standards for fair wages and healthy working conditions for 800 new employees and place women in at least 70 per cent of new supervisory and factory jobs, according to a press release from USAID.
This factory will also advance the goals of the Prosper Africa initiative, with increased apparel production primarily satisfying the demand for uniforms for healthcare workers in the United States due to COVID-19.
Ethical Apparel Africa will receive a $1.35-million grant underpinning an equity investment in Maagrace’s Koforidua factory. Co-funded by USAID/Ghana and USAID/West Africa, this partnership will expand Ghana’s apparel manufacturing industry by providing modern equipment and technical expertise to Maagrace.
Once its model factory is fully operational with new equipment and more efficient processes, Ethical Apparel Africa will export $19 million over the next three years, with at least 80 per cent of exports targeting the US market duty-free under the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA).
The partnership will also focus on placing women in supervisory roles to change gender norms in the garment industry and ensure that over 50 percent of factory middle managers are women.
The Trade Hub is a USAID-funded initiative that catalyzes economic growth through co-investing with the private sector to generate new investment, create new jobs, and increase the value of regional and international exports in West Africa.
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