SA lists clothing allowed for sale as lockdown eases

The announcement followed consultations between Patel’s ministry and clothing, textile and footwear industry leaders.
Image: GCIS

South Africa’s government has published a more detailed list of clothing that can be sold in a first phase of easing its lockdown, giving relief to a clothing industry starved of sales.

The country took its first shaky steps on May 1 towards rolling back one of the world’s strictest COVID-19 lockdowns, seeking a balance between containing the disease and providing much-needed relief for the economy.

In April the government had said clothing retailers will be allowed to sell winter and baby clothes and bedding, without clarifying what falls under those categories, causing confusion.

Under regulations published late on Tuesday, the permitted categories include all children’s and baby wear, maternity wear, adult sleepwear, underwear and footwear, outwear items such as exercise apparel and winter clothes such as knitwear.

Minister of Trade, Industry and Competition, Ebrahim Patel said the manufacturing and retail sector had been through “a very difficult time” and the resumption of clothing sales would help greater production and commerce in the sector.

The list was welcomed by the National Clothing Retail Federation, which includes TFG, Mr Price, Truworths, Woolworths, Pick n Pay Clothing and Queenspark, and by the Apparel & Textiles Association of South Africa (ATASA).

ATASA Deputy Chairperson Herman Pillay said the move would help its manufacturer members recover from lockdown and give “employees the opportunity to be gainfully employed yet again.”

The announcement followed consultations between Patel’s ministry and clothing, textile and footwear industry leaders.

But clothing and general merchandise retailer Pepkor said that while it initially expects reasonable sales, levels are expected to taper off due to increased unemployment as a result of the impact of the coronavirus on companies.


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The whole lockdown methodology and philosophy is completely backwards. If you are allowed to go to a store to buy 1 thing there is no reason not to be able to buy another thing. The whole point of the lockdown is to minimise contact between people, but as soon as you can go to a store for ANYTHING there will be contact – thus banning 1 item but allowing the sale of another does NOTHING for contact between people. I mean seriously, I can go to spar and touch the same trolley, the same fridge handles, the same speedpoint, but I cannot go to the restaurant and touch the same chair, the same door handle, and the same knifes and forms as other people…. what is the logic here?


Like you can buy a T-shirt only if it is worn under something else. In other words it was bought for warmth not looks.

Eish! Cant believe they sit around all day dreaming up this nonsense. I am to afraid to consider what the rest of the world might think of us.

We need to somehow get rid of this lot and Mashaba’s entry into the political ring will just help bring it a little bit closer.

Feels like we are living in Communist Russia…..honestly child-like at its best – absolute Nanny State……

Mr Patel is simply not cabinet level material in any way. A former Zuma era stalwart, a failure in his portfolio of trade and industry and simply incapable of fulfilling the role require din the midst of this dreadful Chinese virus.

He should resign immediately.

Causing confusion….yes, this is what SA’s inept leadership does best (…instead of keeping things simple & provide clarity).

Talking about clothing material…

….if I cover my desktop’s Wifi-router with a cloth (not paper) mask overnight, will there be no new viral infections the next morning?

Some say a tin foil mask covering the Wifi gives the ultimate virus protection, but the connection (sounds like ‘infection’) speed drops to near zero. True?

You can ride in full taxis but cant buy basic stuff like underpants made in China.


This government is absolutely stupid – amongst all there new “concessions” they allow shoppers to buy liquor on Mondays to Wednesdays and between 9.00 a.m. and midday – thus customers are going to queue and all consideration for social distancing will go out the window.
Clearly the government has not got a single rational or logical or both person in its structure – this virus is going to get out of hand because the government don’t think – lock down is not the answer.
I wonder if they can’t use the incompetent JMPD to direct traffic at these venues rather than let them lose on our roads

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