Senior industry officials have expressed their strong opposition to possible restrictions slapped on China's textile exports by the United States.
They were reacting to a petition filed with the US Government by the American Textile Manufacturers Institute (ATMI) on September 5 that could result in additional quotas on certain exports of textiles from China.
ATMI filed the petition in response to China's increased textile exports to the United States this year.
"The increase in Chinese textile exports to the United States is normal because China has joined the World Trade Organization (WTO)," said Wang Shenyang, chairman of the China Chamber of Commerce for Import & Export of Textiles.
"This is a reflection of the free choice of US traders, salespeople and consumers. It shows the improved competitiveness of China's textile industry without quota limitations.
"The increase does not directly hurt related industries in the United States."
Improved management and technology in the textile industry, shorter delivery times and lower costs have resulted from the lifting of quotas on textile exports of China. A safer environment has also attracted more orders.
ATMI is requesting that the United States impose quotas on knit fabric, brassieres, gloves, nightwear and textile luggage.
It also stated in its petition that it would like the US Committee for the Implementation of Textile Agreements (CITA) to consider an additional quota on Chinese textured filament yarn if such imports continue to increase.
Under the terms of China's WTO accession, WTO members may impose specific safeguard measures, or quotas, on Chinese textile and apparel products if the importing country determines that such shipments from China cause or threaten to cause market disruption.
ATMI argues that Chinese exports of textiles and apparel products to the United States increased by almost 900 million square meters in the first six months of this year.
Imports of bras increased by 167 percent in comparison to the same period last year and imports of gloves rose by 173.2 percent.
But an official from the chamber's apparel department said China's increased textile exports were mostly achieved by displacing other countries' exports. They did not add dramatically to US imports.
(China Daily November 21, 2002)