South Korean exports of caps, gloves, scarves, woven underwear and shirts to the US and Europe will no longer be restricted by quotas when the next stage of a world trade liberalisation agreement comes into effect in 2002.

The Korea Federation of Textile Industries said on Thursday it was looking forward to the third stage of quota liberalisation brought about by the World Trade Organisation (WTO) textile agreement.

Association chiefs said although items like caps and scarves only make up a small part of the country's exports, some of them, including fabrics made of regenerated long and short fibres, are popular in the EU.

The WTO textile agreement agreed to abolish quotas for 16 per cent of the textile items traded in the first stage of liberalisation, 17 per cent in the second stage and a further one per cent in the third.