File photo: Reuters
JOHANNESBURG – H&M is looking at South Africa as a potential supplier, with executives from the world’s second largest clothing retailer visiting some of the country’s main cities this week.
South Africa’s government helped to broker the H&M visit as part of efforts to boost the textile sector which has been hit hard by Chinese clothing imports that led to factory closures and thousands of job losses.
H&M faced protests in South Africa in January this year over an advert which featured a black child wearing a sweatshirt with the slogan “coolest monkey in the jungle.”
H&M apologised for the ad and removed it from its marketing.
“Following their apology … we have proposed that they atone very practically by sourcing goods from South Africa,” Ebrahim Patel, Minister of Economic Development, said in a speech on May 10.