National textile production decayed in most areas over the past years, except for sewing cotton thread output levels, which saw significant growth. Suit production for men and boys, along with the volume of women’s bags and suitcases manufactured countrywide, shrunk considerably. Consequently, a continuous descent of employment rates led to a reduction of the workforce engaged in textile manufacturing across the country by more than eight times in 2018, compared to figures from 2000.
The clothing retail trade in Russia has been gradually recovering after years of recession between 2013 and 2016. However, apparel retail trade turnover share in the total retail trade turnover for basic products had already shrunk more than twofold from 2000 to 2018. In terms of customer preferences, despite the fact that average spending was almost identical in online and offline stores, Russians seem to enjoy traditional shopping more than the digital one.
Russian apparel export trade has always notably outnumbered import flows in value. Overall figures of clothing trade, recorded substantial reductions, yet, online export trade has been expanding year-on-year. Major European apparel providers to the country were Italy, Germany, and Spain. Italy accounted for roughly 890 million euros worth in clothes exports to Russia in 2018, after a 14 percent increment in export value during 2017.
Even if the luxury segment only represented about ten percent of the Russian apparel market in 2019, it is believed to have high growth potential, with only eight percent of luxury shoppers planning to reduce their expenditure on such purchases. Among the principal business growth drivers, experts named increased loyalty and attraction of younger audiences as the most important, since younger generations present a greater concentration of brand loyalists.