Blog: Leonie BarrieChina concerns

Leonie Barrie | 18 January 2008

Canvassing views for just-style’s January management briefing, which looks at some of the apparel industry issues likely to top the agenda in 2008, one of the industry experts I spoke to suggested that the top trade issue in the US can be summarised in one word: China. 

And of course it’s true. Will the US really give up its safeguard quotas at the end of this year, and will China be a target for action to try to force currency revaluation, elimination of subsidies and improvements in product safety standards?

To continue, if China is the top of the trade agenda, then top of the political agenda in the US are the presidential and congressional campaigns running this year. There is a history that in every presidential campaign, some type of commitment made to the US textile industry representatives as part of the campaigning in the south. This year should be no different – the only question for this year is what type of commitment is on the table?

No one really expects the candidates to try to extend the China quotas – but action against China, or against Vietnam through the trade remedy cases, or even against socks from Honduras – could end up one of the hot topics. 

And as just-style went to press today it seems already this is starting to unravel: a ruling is imminent from the US Department of Commerce on whether or not to increase duty costs on US imports of socks made in Honduras.

Eight apparel industry issues to watch in 2008


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