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November 15, 2023

STTI a united force for more responsible purchasing practices

After kicking off their cooperation in 2021 as the first supplier led initiative on purchasing practices, STTI has just celebrated their 10th working group meeting in Guangdong China. What many deemed a short lived response to the poor purchasing practices during COVID, has thus turned into a long standing cooperation, still uniting manufacturers globally around responsible purchasing practices.

When the initiative kicked off their cooperation with STTI’s white paper, they clearly communicated their hopes for the future of the sector. While the COVID pandemic that shed light on the poor purchasing practices has ended, new pressures on purchasing practices arise. The Russian-Ukrainian war and its effects on energy prices, inflation and recession in many consumer markets and high raw material costs, put persistent pressure on fair and responsible purchasing practices.

Chaired by STTI Member CNTAC, STTI discussed their individual responses to these pressures and reconfirmed their commitment to pushing for systemic change as a group.

After 2 years of commitment STTI is being globally recognized as the only manufacturer led initiative on purchasing practices and has strengthened its cooperation with a number of brands and Multi-Stakeholder groups, collecting buy in from relevant stakeholders for an agenda for change. While some sustainability challenges require national or even factory specific approaches, purchasing practices require systemic change. To foster an upward spiral instead of a vicious downward cycle, STTI will remain committed to seek conversations with other stakeholders as a group.

One issue that currently remains unsolved is a lack of accountability when it comes to commitments around better purchasing practices. STTI thus adds trust-building and transparency with the sector on purchasing practices commitments to their list of priorities for the near future.

Another priority concerns changes in the legislative landscape. The group remains alert to policy changes that acknowledge responsible purchasing practices as a key element of due diligence, ultimately allowing manufacturers to run socially, environmentally and economically sustainable businesses. STTI thus decided to next meet at the OECD Garment and Textile Forum in late February 2024. The group will seek exchange with policy makers, buyers and other stakeholders alike.

The initiative also celebrated receiving the International Textile Manufacturing Federation’s (ITMF) award for international cooperation on responsible purchasing practices on 5th of November. This event acknowledges the attention needed for a unified approach to improve responsible purchasing practices. STTI will stay committed to this objective or as STTI Member and IAF President Cem Altan said: “Manufacturers can’t act green, when in the red”.

For further questions please contact: 

Miran Ali | STTI Spokesperson | | Mobile +880 171 1565070  

Matthijs Crietee | STTI Project Lead at IAF | | Mobile +31 653 93 06 74 


The Sustainable Terms of Trade initiative, led by the STAR Network, the International Apparel Federation (IAF) and the Better Buying Institute and supported by GIZ FABRIC consists of 13 industry associations from 10 countries facing similar challenges regarding purchasing practices in the textile and garment industry. These are: API, Indonesia; VITAS, Vietnam; CNTAC, China; TAFTAC, Cambodia; MGMA, Myanmar; BGMEA and BKMEA, Bangladesh; AEPC, India; PHMA, PTEA, TMA, Pakistan; TCMA, Turkey and AMITH, Morocco.