On November 16, FOSTEX project partner ACI – Amman Chamber of Industry, held the second FOSTEX Roundtable with participants from the local Jordanian textile industry. The roundtable saw the participation of 18 representatives of external stakeholders and all local project partners.
Eng. Fadel Labadi, Manager of Industrial Department of ACI, delivered the opening remarks at the start of the meeting highlighting the main objectives of the FOSTEX initiative: to develop partnership between industry and universities through establishing textile technology centers at the Jordanian universities part of the project consortium: Jordan University of Science &Technology (JUST) and Balqa Applied University (BAU). Eng. Labadi indicated that the centers are planned to provide tailored services packages to the industry as well as to the students and researchers in several areas such as specialized consultancy, advisory, training, lab testing , applied research, innovation and product development.
The opening session was attended by Dr. Fahmi Abu Rub (JUST) and Dr. Tarek Azab (BAU) and their colleagues Eng. Salah Abu Yahya (JUST) and Dr. Daasan Jaradat (BAU) who delivered a detailed presentation explaining the services of the textile technology center established at each University and illustrating the testing equipment installed thanks to the FOSTEX initiative.
Following Eng. Bashar Qteashat (ACI) presented the FOSTEX Entrepreneur plan for Jordan highlighting the main contents of the plan providing a general overview of advanced textiles in the global market, success stories of European SMEs and start-ups for innovative products, the guidelines for starting up a business in Jordan, and available services for entrepreneurs including services through the FOSTEX textile centers established at the mentioned Jordanian universities.
In addition, a presentation was delivered by the Jordan Higher Council of Science & Technology about another European Project titled “Innovation for Bringing Creativity to activate Traditional Sectors in Med Area” within the ENI CBC MED European Program, where the presentation highlighted the main objectives of the project and the planned upcoming activities that mainly tackles innovation of the textile and clothing sector , business development , policy issues in addition to launching sub grants for SMEs.
In conclusion an open discussion took place where the participants confirmed several main points such as the importance of the established textile technology centers in adding value for the industry in the area of innovation, product development, consultancy and training.
Also, the participants raised the attention to the several challenges faced on the Jordanian market: the competition with imported clothing products due to the increasing import of low quality and cheap products, lack of availability of qualified technical labor and fashion designers, and the need to raise the local products’ competitiveness.
Furthermore, a background paper was distributed to the participants including information on the center services. The Background papers of all roundtables are available for download on the FOSTEX website resource page.