WASHINGTON, D.C. — June 12, 2014 — On June 10, U.S. textile manufacturers joined with their counterparts throughout the Western Hemisphere to communicate to congressional leaders the importance of adopting fair and reasonable textile rules in the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP). The event brought together the trade associations for U.S., Mexican, and Central American textile and apparel producers, CEOs of regional manufacturers, and trade representatives of CAFTA-DR governments. Meetings highlighted the strong growth in trade and investment in textile manufacturing as a result of the NAFTA and CAFTA-DR trade agreements.
The group met with House and Senate leadership offices, including aides to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, Speaker John Boehner, and House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, and staff for the House Ways and Means and Senate Finance Committees, and leaders of the House Textile Caucus. Discussions focused on the need for a strong “yarn forward” rule of origin, robust customs enforcement, and reasonable tariff phase outs for sensitive products in TPP.
“Mexico is a key textile and apparel producer in the Western Hemisphere and is a critical part of the supply chain for many American textile and apparel companies,” said Nora Ambriz, Executive Director of CANAINTEX. “Ninety-six percent of Mexican apparel exports are shipped to the United States each year and Mexico is the leading export destination for U.S. textiles and apparel. NAFTA has created this dynamic and integral relationship between the U.S. and Mexico’s textile and apparel sectors and it is critically important that TPP does not damage the Western Hemisphere supply chain in this sector.”
“A final TPP must contain provisions that have been the foundation of U.S. trade agreements over the past 25 years: fair rules of origin, common sense market access rules, and strong customs enforcement provisions,” said Jay Self, Chairman of NCTO and President and CEO of Greenwood Mills. “The NAFTA and CAFTA-DR free trade agreements have created a sustainable and competitive manufacturing platform for U.S. textile and apparel companies which allows us to compete in the global market. It is imperative that U.S. trade policy continues to foster the economic growth seen under these agreements by building on the successful rules they contain.”
“The U.S. and the CAFTA-DR region, including the Dominican Republic, have created a prosperous and sustainable integrated manufacturing platform,” said Karin de Leon, Executive Director of CECATEC-RD. “This partnership provides hundreds of thousands of manufacturing jobs throughout the CAFTA-DR region, and is responsible for billions in two-way trade with the United States.”
Posted June 17, 2014