San José, Costa Rica, since 1956

Another textile firm closes in Costa Rica

Textile company BorKar announced on Tuesday the closing of its entire operation in Costa Rica, following the path of many other firms in the sector. In the past four years, thousands of textile jobs have disappeared in the country.

The firm’s owner, Michael Borg, told reporters that the last 300 employees of a company that once counted as many as 1,100 workers will be laid off on Tuesday.

A group of former employees started a new self-managed company, Coopetrajes del Poás, that will rent BorKar’s current facilities to move forward with a smaller operation.

This new closure follows that of Confecciones Jinete, a U.S. firm, which in January announced it would leave the country and eliminate 500 jobs.

During the worst period for textile companies here, in 2009, 10 companies closed. Since then, the trend has continued, with Cimer, manufacturer of Dockers and Levi’s, closing in 2010, and Compañía Textil Centroamericana in 2012.

The decline took a noticeable toll on textile exports, which dropped from $700 million in 2000 to some $200 million in 2012, according to official figures.

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