The European Union is planning to ask China to "moderate" its textile exports once quotas are lifted at the start of next year.

The decision, reported in The Financial Times, follows a meeting in Paris yesterday between EU trade commissioner Peter Mandelson and Robert Zoellick, his US counterpart.

US groups have been calling for emergency safeguard restrictions on textile imports amid growing worldwide fears that China's surging industry will lead to upheavals in the sector following the removal of quotas.

An EU official is quoted by the newspaper as saying: "The removal of the quotas has been known for 10 years, but nobody foresaw 10 years ago that there would now be such a competitive textile industry in China…There should be some moderation."

The EU believes the Chinese government could control clothing exports through tighter controls on imports of raw materials such as cotton or reductions in state loans to textile companies.

The Financial Times says the EU also intends to draw attention to the likely damage a sudden surge of Chinese exports could have on other poorer textile producers in Asia, such as Bangladesh.