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21st August 2019, Washington, DC

Textile executives stress importance of USMCA

USCMA would update and replace the 25-year-old North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). US textile executives participated in a roundtable with Representative Tom Rice (SC-07), a key member of the House Ways and Means Trade Subcommittee, at which they discussed the competitiveness of the domestic industry, outlined priority issues in Washington and explored ways to jointly push for passage of the US-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA).

Congressman Rice, a leader on trade and competitiveness issues that heavily impact the domestic textiles industry, participated in an executive roundtable hosted by Milliken & Company at its headquarters in Spartanburg, SC.

“Milliken is honoured to host Congressman Rice today to talk about innovation, competitiveness and the importance of passing USMCA,” said Jeff Price, EVP of Milliken Operations. “USMCA makes several key updates to NAFTA that will enable our trilateral trade to become stronger, which benefits this key industry in South Carolina. We greatly appreciate the Congressman being here today and appreciate his leadership.”

USCMA would update and replace the 25-year-old North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). The NAFTA supply chain drives around US$ 20 billion in annual trilateral textiles and apparel trade, up from just US$ 7 billion prior to NAFTA, and is important to the continued growth of the industry.

“Congressional passage of the USMCA trade agreement is one of our top legislative priorities this year,” said Leib Oehmig, Chairman of NCTO and CEO of Glen Raven. “The new USMCA makes several important improvements that would benefit our industry and enhance our three-way trade. We look forward to continuing to work with Congressman Rice to help get this trade agreement over the finish line.”

The updated USMCA includes stronger rules or origin for sewing thread, pocketing, narrow elastics and certain coating fabrics. In addition, it is designed to fix the Kissell Amendment loophole and ensure stronger customs enforcement.

“I was honoured to participate in today’s roundtable with leaders in South Carolina’s textiles industry to discuss the need to pass the USMCA as quickly as possible. Modernising outdated trade agreements to reflect our 21st century economy will support American manufacturers and enhance our global competitiveness. I will bring the valuable input I received today back to Washington as I continue working to advance the USMCA and keep our economy booming,” commented Congressman Rice.

www.ncto.org

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