| 8 December 2023, Friday |

Saudi Arabia’s Fashion Commission finalizes sector development strategy

The Fashion Commission has finalized its strategy to develop the sector, including educational and training programs to prepare graduates for the labor market, providing outlets for the distribution of locally designed products, and building networks between designers and investors.

The strategy’s aim is to enhance the national identity of the fashion industry and to serve designers, investors and creatives in all sector-related fields.

Fashion Commission CEO Burak Cakmak, who was appointed to the role earlier this year, said the strategy was crafted to ensure that the right infrastructure was being set up.

“The Kingdom can be a stellar example of how to build an innovative, sustainable, locally and culturally relevant fashion ecosystem in a country,” he added. “Through engaging with the innovators across the value chain and partnering to bring education, business development, entrepreneurship and retailing experiences, Saudis will be able to transform local businesses to achieve the highest standard in their operations and branding that can be celebrated globally.”

Among the development initiatives are: Defining the sector’s bylaws, setting up an association for fashion professionals, activating a product development studio to help designers, supporting local and international exhibitions, teaming up with foreign education institutions, promoting the accessibility of raw materials and manufacturing suppliers, creating a digital network of industry experts to facilitate connections, establishing a hub to support emerging talent, mentoring programs and attracting investment to  develop a local manufacturing system.

The commission is one of 11 bodies under the Ministry of Culture and was set up to develop Saudi Arabia’s blossoming fashion industry.

It wants to advance and evolve the sector through culture, amplifying the country’s heritage and identity, while at the same time responding to global needs and having a positive impact on the national economy.

It also seeks to enable the development of a fashion industry that is sustainable, inclusive, fully integrated along the value chain, and maximizes local talent and experience.

Its vision is based on setting the right ambition for the sector, planning in waves to balance short, medium and long-term ambitions, and to achieve results that fuel the success of Vision 2030.

Its initiatives will also contribute to a thriving cultural and educational ecosystem, enabling and enhancing the expression of Saudi heritage and identity, and boosting designers’ talent.

The commission will play an active role in stakeholder engagement, improve the legal and regulatory framework, and establish long-term partnerships to promote growth in the sector locally and globally, positioning the Kingdom as a regional gateway to the world of sustainable fashion and a global leader in retail and consumption.