Underwear maker Fruit of the Loom is the largest employer in El Salvador according to the US embassy. So it is not good news when the company announced today that it would temporarily layoff some 3000 of its 12,000 employees. The layoff was blamed on declining orders from the company's customers due to overall economic conditions. Despite the layoffs, the company reiterated its commitment to its factory operations in El Salvador.
Fruit of the Loom is based in Kentucky, and is a subsidiary of Warren Buffet's Berkshire Hathaway. A 2005 story from a Kentucky newspaper describes the company's El Salvador operations and the role of the maquiiadora sector in El Salvador's economy.
According to La Prensa Grafica, the overall textile sector in the country employed 104,000 workers in its maquila factories at the end of 2008, down 6,000 from the prior year.