Photo: Wolfgang Bertenbreiter

Ethiopia, Burkina Faso, Ivory Coast, Ghana, Cameroon, Malawi, Mozambique, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia and Zimbabwe

Over 800,000 agriculturalists have received training in sustainable cotton cultivation and had their crops certified in accordance with the Cotton Made in Africa standard, allowing many of the participants to raise their income by around 30 to 40 percent. A total of 1.1 million tons of unprocessed cotton (440,000 metric tons of deseeded cotton) was grown within the program in the 2014-5 season.

Photo: Photothek Ute Grabowsky

Pakistan and Cambodia

The concerns of the workforce in over 25 factories employing some 20,000 workers are now regularly taken into account as a result of the numerous training programs and moderated discussions between management and employees carried out since the beginning of the cooperative German development program. Work inspectors from the centres of the textile and garment industry in the Punjab have received training in collaboration with the German Association of Occupational Accident Insurance Funds (DGUV).

Photo: Seidentraum


The textile company Seidentraum and the German Corporation for International Cooperation (GIZ) support the production and export of high-end, hand-woven products using locally sourced Eri silk in the Indian state of Meghalaya as part of a long-term program to improve the skills, income and living conditions of the indigenous Meghalayan population.

Photo: Vaude

Vietnam, China and Taiwan

The German outdoor equipment producer VAUDE has joined forces with the German Investment and Development Corporation (DEG) to scrutinise the material suppliers and producers in its supply chain and ensure environmentally friendly production and safe working conditions. VAUDE uses third-party experts to provide its Asian suppliers with an intensive two-year training in environmental, chemical, and industrial safety management.

Photo: Photothek Michael Gottschalk


Around 850 factories have demonstrably improved their adherence to social and environmental standards after taking advantage of the consultation and training offered by German development programs.

Some 100,000 garment industry workers have learnt how to better assert their rights after attending information sessions offered by NGOs and trade unions in women’s cafes.

Over 300 work inspectors have been trained and, where necessary, provided with motorbikes and other equipment as part of a joint project sponsored by German development assistance and the International Labour Organisation (ILO).



Consultation provided by German development assistance funds allowed 200 factories to improve their environmental management practices with regard to wastewater treatment plants, chemical management and energy use. The Bangladeshi government passed a law in April 2016 regulating the disposal of sewage sludge.

Photo: Zar Chi Oo, SMART Myanmar


Around 2,000 workers have already attended information sessions informing them of their rights in Sunday cafes. The cafes also provide legal advice in labour and family conflicts in order to bolster workers’ sense of independence and confidence.

The Textile Partnership

A new heavyweight is making waves in the textile industry: the Partnership for Sustainable Textiles. Established in 2014 on the initiative of the Federal Minister of Economic Cooperation and Development, Gerd Müller, the partnership aims to ensure sustainable standards in the production of textiles. Its membership includes numerous industry giants and sustainability trailblazers. Together, its members account for 55 percent of all turnover in the textile retail branch.

Comprising more than 180 members, the partnership’s membership includes 148 companies and associations, 24 NGOs, two trade unions, five standard-setting organisations and three ministries.

The partnership is charting the course for a new textile sector that is both social and ecologically sustainable. The partnership seeks to implement improvements in four areas:

The partnership has prepared the way for the successful implementation of its goals by applying the following measures:

For more information see