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#4439: On the viability of a textile industry: Poincy replies to Gill (fwd)

From: Jean Poincy <caineve@idt.net>

Mark says: 

"Is there an internal market sufficient for investment in textile

I argue:

The level of wage or wage per se is not the essence of market or
internal market. The NEED TO CONSUME is. The people in expressing their
need to consume and exchanging as a result make an internal market.
Money plays a very minor role considering this fact. We can go way back
to understand the earliest function of money. All it did (and still
does) is to facilitate exchange as barter became too cumbersome and was
ineffective in matching the parties need of consumption. As a result,
exchange was difficult to be held. Money has resolved all that.

Determining if the "need to consume" is sufficient in relation to mass
production is a matter of economic strategies. The "need to consume" is
there in Ayiti. Everyone in Ayiti needs affordable clothing. Don't get
me wrong; I am not advocating barter here although the circumstance
requires it today in Ayiti. My insinuation is:  when the country begins
to produce in relation to the people's "need to consume", the terrain is
there for a medium of exchange to be accepted by everyone. However,
there is no need to go and reinvent another one since Ayiti already has
one. Production is what will bring value to its medium of exchange. 

Mark says:

"Are Haitians willing to invest in such a development?  not at this
point, in that the market demand is quite poor....those who have money
prefer western clothing....those who dont can buy the second-hand
clothing from Miami cheaper than they could clothing made in Haiti....."

I argue:

This statement is a fallacy. First, such an investment reposes very much
on government incentives through subsidies. It's not up to the privates
to decide to invest in such a development or not. The government must
set the trend and encourage people to invest. Second, people go for
western clothes, because they don't find clothes in Ayiti and if they
found them the quality would are so poor. Quality would be the mantra of
the textile industry. Remember that I said people would be induced to
like the Ayitian products. Third, it is a matter of policy in allowing
Miami cheaper clothing to enter the Ayitian market. 

Mark says:

"until this situation changes, i doubt there will be any textile
industry growth.....just getting farmers to grow cotton will be
difficult in itself....i say this given the attempts we made at one
point -l995-l996, to "test the waters" about cotton....we were looking
for anything, quite frankly, that we could become involved in...."

I argue:
I don't dismiss the environment constraint that Mark is concerned with,
but I know they are no environmental limitation. Remember that I said
the whole enterprise would be based on regionalism. A specialization for
each aspect of the industry in each region.

There are solutions for all problems Mark. If there were not solutions
for a problem, a problem would not be a problem. Our inability to find
the solutions immediately does not make the solutions inexistent. Trust

Ayiti has lived, lives and will live