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NCTO welcomes investment that can help accelerate US advanced manufacturing

The Council says the investment will add to the ongoing efforts to promote innovation in fibre and textile science in the US.

5th April 2016

Innovation in Textiles
 |  Washington, DC

Medical/Hygiene, Protective, Industrial, Clothing/​Footwear, Civil Engineering

The National Council of Textile Organizations (NCTO) has welcomed the announcement.  “We are pleased that the RFT-MII has gone from concept to reality,” said NCTO President Augustine Tantillo. “This investment in advanced manufacturing will add to the substantial ongoing efforts associated with innovation in fibre and textile science in the United States.”

“This long range investment will help the United States maintain its current position as the most innovative and technically advanced textile industry in the world.”

Collaborative effort

The RFT-MII is a collaborative effort between government and the private sector to accelerate the development of the next generation of highly functional textiles from both a commercial and military perspective.

President Obama announced the formation of the RFT-MII on 18 March 2015 as part of his National Network of Manufacturing Innovation (NNMI) initiative. The NNMI brings together industry, academia and federal partners to increase US manufacturing competitiveness, by promoting a robust and sustainable manufacturing research and development infrastructure.

Investment and growth

Total funding is expected to be almost US 320 million. The Department of Defense (DoD) has committed US 75 million, a figure matched by almost US 250 million in money and other in-kind contributions from the U.S. textile industry and other sources.  

“We expect that it will ultimately spur jobs and investment in our sector while also making our military stronger,” commented Tantillo, as he noted that domestic industry supplies more than 8,000 different textile products to our war-fighters.

There are 579,000 jobs in US fibre, textile and apparel production. Sector exports were US 27.75 billion last year. Capital investment within industry totalled US 2 billion in 2014, an increase of 50% since 2009, the Council reports.

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