Sector of textile processing industry

Manufacture of textiles

After 1999, the textile industry has grown with the proper combination of tradition, creativity and experience, where lots of new private enterprises emerged from families who have a tradition in the processing of leather, fur, shoe, knitting, weaving, sewing, new sophisticated designers, traders and foreign investments. Subsector “Manufacture of textiles” has a potential for a considerable potential for the expansion of employment, turnover and increase of exports.

In Kosovo, there are currently 111 private enterprises engaged in the manufacture of textiles. The majority of them are manufacturers of final products. In this subsector there is considerable space for investors.

Manufacturing enterprises of this industry in Kosovo are mainly concentrated in the following regions: Prishtina, Prizren, Ferizaj, and Gjakova. Textile products from Kosovo are mostly exported to the EU countries and CEFTA countries.

In 2019, 111 enterprises were identified in the subsector of textile with 629 employees and a turnover value of 15.38 million euros.

Exports in the subsector "Manufacture of Textiles", in 2019, increased by 28.34%, while in 2018, there was a decrease of 1.11%, compared to 2017.

The total value of exports in this subsector is 7.87 million euros, while exports to EU countries are 48.11%, to CEFTA countries 38.61%, EFTA countries 1.04% and other countries 12.25%. The subsector "Manufacture of Textiles" has exported to EU countries, worth 3.78 million euros, while the country to which it has exported the most is Germany with 59%. Exports to CEFTA countries are 3.04 million euros, while North Macedonia is the country where it has been exported the most with 27.9%, Serbia with 26% and Albania with 21.4%.

Table14. Export in the subsector Manufacture of Textiles

Manufacture of wearing apparel

Kosovo enterprises and manufacturers for apparel and leather can be divided into three categories:

 a) Cut, Make, and Trim (CMT): Also known as “cut & sew”, lohn, and façon. This is the major opportunity in general for apparel manufacturers in the SEE region.

 b) Domestic apparel retailers: Many smaller companies sell standard apparel products and uniforms to the highly fragmented local and adjacent countries market and to local government.

c) Fashion: There are several high-end women’s fashion designers in Kosovo that sell through their ateliers and in stores in the main cities.

Apart from being labour-intensive, the wearing apparel wearing apparel workforce is femaledominated, and many of the firms in this subsector are women-owned or women-run.

“The subsector of wearing apparel” according to table no.15, in 2019, had 856 employees, 210 enterprises, and a turnover of 8.51 million euros.

In 2019, this sub-sector recorded a decrease in employment, for one less employee, and in the number of enterprises by 7%, while turnover increased by 16.5%, compared to 2018.

Export in the “Manufacture of wearing apparel” subsector recorded a significant increase in the last three years. In 2019 this subsector recorded an increase of 51.1 %, compared to the previous year, similarly there was an increase of 48.8% in 2018 compared to 2017.

Table 16. Exports in the subsector of wearing apparel

The total amount of exports in this subsector is 3.29 million euros, while export with the EU countries is 62%, CEFTA countries 17.51%, EFTA countries 3.69 % and with other countries 18.61%. Products of the subsector “Manufacture of wearing apparel”, in the EU countries are mostly exported to Italy with 31.24% and Netherlands with 23.41%.

Manufacture of leather and related products

The leather industry in Kosovo dates from the tradition of leather tanners and curriers and shoe factories, dating from 1945.

The subsector of leather and related products has a solid impact on employment, with a slight fluctuation over the last three years. The number of enterprises, employees and annual turnover for 2017-2019 is analysed based on this. In 2019, this sub-sector recorded 29 enterprises, 379 employees, and the annual turnover in the amount of 7.15 million euros. This sub-sector has recorded a decrease in employment for 51 employees or 11.87% and in the number of enterprises by 21.62%, while the turnover has increased by 5.05%, compared to 2018.

In 2019, export in the subsector “Manufacture of leather and related products” recorded an increase of 12.62%, compared to the previous year.

Table 18. Export in the subsector of Manufacture of leather (15).


The total amount of exports in the subsector “Manufacture of leather and related products” is 3.08 million euro. The products are mainly exported to EU countries with 83.45%, CEFTA countries with 16.25%, while at a very low percentage to EFTA countries at 0.23% and to other countries at only 0.07%.

 The countries to which most products from this subsector are exported is Italy at 39.32%, France at 39.12% and to Albania at 6.94%.

According to table no.18, the Activity “Manufacture of footwear” recorded an amount of 2.23 million euros, in 2019 it recorded an increase in export for 25.62% compared to 2018. Footwear products to EU countries were exported to Italy with 64.95%, to France with 26.56%, to Germany 5.29%, etc.


Source: Department of Industry/Ministry of Trade and Industry

Report 2019 - Sector C - Manufacturing industry