Incentives for Adoption of Environmental Management Practices among Textile and Apparel Manufactures in Sri Lanka

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Fifty-eight percent of export earnings and fifty-two percent of industrial employments are generated by the textile and apparel industry in Sri Lanka. Despite their economic importance the sector too contributes to environmental pollution. Surprisingly, some textile and apparel manufactures in Sri Lanka have introduced voluntary mechanisms to reduce the level of environmental pollution caused by their operation. Existing literature has explained different reasons for their adoption decision without specifying the most powerful motive which caused their decision. In addressing this unfulfilled literature gap, the study intends to explore the most significant factors for the adoption decision among Sri Lankan textile and apparel manufactures. In addition, the study further provides an understanding of the existing legislative background as well as determining whether this legislative background provides any incentives for their adoption decision. The findings of this novel study expect to motivate non-adapters within and among industries.
Case study strategy was used in the study to achieve its objectives. The study examined factories registered in the Board of Investment of Sri Lanka. Data were collected through in-depth interviews and an industry based survey from BOI registered textile and apparel manufactures in Sri Lanka. Survey data were analysed quantitatively to identify the significant factors that drive their adoption decision. Environmental management practices are identified with four variables; ISO 14001 certification, environmental audits, water recycling procedures and material reuse as well as factory characteristics, regulatory pressures and market based pressures are identified as the explanatory variables for their adoption decision.
Accordingly, the study found that more than 96% of the factories have adapted at least one voluntary practices and are influenced by factory characteristics and market based pressures. The study revealed that the regulatory pressures are not significant and there are many issues in the existing legal background; especially in implementing and monitoring. Hence, this novel study contributes to both manufactures and policy makers by identifying the drivers and gaps in the legal system.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)97-124
Number of pages28
JournalSri Lankan Journal of Business Economics (SLJBE)
Publication statusPublished - 10 Aug 2016
Externally publishedYes


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