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  • About the United States Fashion Industry Association (USFIA)

    For 25 years, the United States Association of Importers of Textiles & Apparel worked to eliminate barriers that impede the free movement of textile and apparel products to the United States and international markets. On November 6th, 2013, to kick off our 25th anniversary year, we launched a new brand—including a new name, mission statement, and values statement—that more clearly communicates our purpose and direction for the future. We invite you to explore our new brand, which was developed over 10 months with input from our members and trusted network, and see how our work makes a positive impact on our members and the broader fashion industry.

    And we want you to know that we’re still the same organization you know and trust—but in a better outfit.

     

    About Us

    The United States Fashion Industry Association (USFIA) represents the fashion industry: textile and apparel brands, retailers, importers, and wholesalers based in the United States and doing business globally. Founded in 1989 as the United States Association of Importers of Textiles & Apparel with the goal of eliminating the global apparel quota system, USFIA now works to eliminate the tariff and non-tariff barriers that impede the industry’s ability to trade freely and create economic opportunities in the United States and abroad. Headquartered in Washington, D.C., USFIA is the most respected voice for the fashion industry in front of the U.S. government as well as international governments and stakeholders.  With constant, two-way communication, USFIA staff and counsel serve as the eyes and ears of our members in Washington and around the world, enabling them to stay ahead of the regulatory challenges of today and tomorrow. Through our publications, educational events, and networking opportunities, USFIA also connects with key stakeholders across the value chain including U.S. and international service providers, suppliers, and industry groups.

     

    Mission Statement

    The United States Fashion Industry Association (USFIA) is dedicated to the removal of barriers that impede the free movement of textile and apparel products to the United States and international markets.

     

    Values

    USFIA was instrumental in eliminating the global apparel quota system. As our industry increasingly globalizes, new challenges arise every day. To remain focused and ensure that our work makes a positive impact on our members, we keep the following five values in mind with every decision we make.

    Integrity

    Our members tell us that we listen to them, support them, and defend them—while our government partners tell us that we work with them to find creative solutions.

    Substance

    We maintain and articulate a deep understanding of the industry and challenges most important to our members—the sourcing and compliance executives who make tough decisions every day on how to address these challenges.

    Focus

    We keep a laser focus on our mission, which allows us to be agile and quickly seize upon opportunities to move the needle.

    Collaboration

    Our members collaborate to share best practices and amplify the industry’s voice on the critical issues, putting aside marketplace competition to work together toward common goals.

    Foresight

    We keep our members informed not only about the regulatory challenges today, but also the regulatory challenges of tomorrow—and as our industry globalizes, we likewise expand our reach.

  • Resources

    The United States Fashion Industry Association (USFIA) has a number of resources to help you navigate the industry. 

    • Ask the Experts

      Do you have a question for the United States Fashion Industry Association's staff or counsel? If you have a question about trade policy, customs procedures, or sourcing opportunities, whether general or very specific, email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and one of our experts will get back to you! Please note that questions and answers may be published and/or emailed to members, though you will remain anonymous.

    • Board Resources

      The United States Fashion Industry Association's Board of Directors includes sourcing and compliance executives from the leading American retailers, brands, and importers of textiles and apparel. Below, you'll find recent Board communications and other resources, for Board members only. For more information on the USFIA Board of Directors, click here.

       

      Board Communications Archive (Board Members Only)

    • Career Center

      Below, you’ll find job opportunities with United States Fashion Industry Association (USFIA) Member and Associate Member companies. The option to post a job opportunity is currently limited to USFIA Members and Associate Members only.

      To post a job in the USFIA Career Center…

      If you are a member and your company is looking to hire someone—whether in customs brokerage or supply-chain logistics or even apparel design—we are happy to post your advertisement below and send it to our distribution lists. To get started, download the USFIA Career Center guidelines here or contact  Membership Coordinator Jana Kalish at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

      To apply for a job in the USFIA Career Center…

      Regardless of whether or not you are a member, we invite you to utilize the USFIA Career Center in your job search. To apply for one of the positions, please read the entire description and follow the instructions within. USFIA will not accept any phone calls regarding any of the positions listed.

       

      Current Positions

  • Events

    Events

    The United States Fashion Industry Association (USFIA) hosts a number of conferences, seminars, and webinars throughout the year, including our annual conference and other events in New York as well as an annual West Coast Seminar and Mid-West Seminar. In addition, USFIA participates in and promotes a number of relevant industry events and trade shows around the world. You'll find our calendar below, and links to our event pages in the menu bar.

    If you have an event you think would be of interest to USFIA members, please send information to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.">

    • Seminars

      Despite the trend towards distance learning, nothing beats hearing from the experts, face-to-face, and being able to ask questions in real time.

    • Webinars

      The United States Fashion Industry Association (USFIA) offers periodic topic-driven webinars on subjects of interest to members and those in the apparel importing community. Hear from experts without leaving the comfort of your desk. Many of our webinars are free to all employees of member companies.

    • Industry Events

      The United States Fashion Industry Association (USFIA) participates in and promotes a number of relevant industry events, including events hosted by our members and affiliates.

    • Past USFIA Seminars

      The United States Fashion Industry Association (USFIA) hosts a number of conferences, seminars, and webinars throughout the year, including our annual conference and other events in New York as well as an annual West Coast Seminar and Mid-West Seminar. Below, you'll find recaps and presentations from select events.

    • Past USFIA Webinars

      The United States Fashion Industry Association (USFIA) offers topic-driven webinars on issues of importance to the textile and apparel importing community. Our webinars offer the opportunity for you to hear from experts without leaving your desk--and you can participate from anywhere in the world. Below, you'll find recaps from select past webinars.

  • Advocacy

    For 25 years, the United States Fashion Industry Association (USFIA)--formerly the United States Association of Importers of Textiles & Apparel (USA-ITA)--worked to eliminate barriers that impede the free movement of textile and apparel products to the United States and international markets. We participate in advocacy activities on a number of issues related to our mission in order to eliminate the tariff and non-tariff barriers that impede the industry’s ability to trade freely and create economic opportunities in the United States and abroad. We encourage you to explore these issues to learn how our advocacy work makes a positive impact on our members.

     

    • Issues

      Click on an issue to learn more about it, our position, and our coalition and advocacy work related to it.

      • Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP)

        The United States Fashion Industry Association (USFIA) supports the negotiation of a high-standard Trans-Pacific Partnership agreement, with 21st-century rules and market access. We especially recommend a new approach to the Rules of Origin for textiles and apparel. Instead of focusing predominantly on the source of the yarns to determine which products are eligible for duty-free access, we ask for a more sophisticated approach to the negotiations that recognizes the importance of the global value chain.

      • Trans-Atlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP)

        The United States Fashion Industry Association (USFIA) supports the negotiation of a free trade agreement between the U.S. and the European Union. These negotiations should immediately eliminate all tariffs on day one of the agreement. In addition, the TTIP should eliminate technical and administrative barriers through regulatory convergence.

      • Remove Duties on Apparel
        It is simply shameful that struggling American families have to pay high taxes for baby apparel and children's clothing, while the wealthy can import silk scarves with a duty of 1.2 percent. Let's eliminate regressive taxes on middle class Americans and start lowering prices on basic apparel. 
      • African Growth & Opportunity Act (AGOA)

        The United States Fashion Industry Association (USFIA) supports an immediate extension of the duty-free benefits of the African Growth Opportunity Act (AGOA). We urge Congress to act to extend AGOA as soon as possible.

      • Nicaragua TPL

        The United States Fashion Industry Association (USFIA) supports S. 1136, the Nicaraguan Tariff Preference Level Extension Act of 2013. We urge Congress to act as quickly as possible to extend the TPL, which is scheduled to expire on December 31, 2014. Uncertainty about whether Congress will extend these CAFTA benefits will hurt Nicaraguan purchases of U.S. fabrics, as well as eliminate a key Western Hemisphere sourcing tool for U.S. apparel brands and retailers.

      • Center of Excellence & Expertise (CEE) for Apparel, Footwear, & Textiles

        The United States Fashion Industry Association (USFIA) supports the U.S. Customs and Border Protection initiative to expand the Centers for Excellence and Expertise (CEE) for Apparel, Footwear, & Textiles.

      • Trade Promotion Authority (TPA)

        The United States Fashion Industry Association (USFIA) supports congressional action to approve Trade Promotion Authority as soon as possible in 2014.

      • Cumulation for Free Trade Agreements

        The United States Fashion Industry Association (USFIA) supports negotiation of cumulation provisions with all Free Trade Agreements. The link between Free Trade Agreements will support sourcing opportunities with key trading partners and will encourage the development of global value chains between FTA partners.

      • Ethical Sourcing

        As the fashion industry has learned in recent years, “ethical sourcing” and “compliance” are no longer hot buzzwords—they’re non-negotiable aspects of your company’s operations. United States Fashion Industry Association (USFIA) members are committed to sourcing at the highest standards, and in fact are the industry leaders in developing and maintaining ethical, compliant operations. While compliance is part of all operations, USFIA and our members are especially focused on the following issues.

      • Center of Excellence & Expertise (CEE) for the Industry

        U.S. Customs & Border Protection (CBP) has been developing and implementing Centers of Excellence & Expertise (CEEs) for all U.S. industries. The goals of the CEEs are:

        1. To serve as a single point of processing for businesses enrolled in CBP's trusted shipper programs, such as Customs-Trade Partnership Against Terrorism (C-TPAT) and Importer Self-Assessment (ISA);
        2. To increase industry-based knowledge to segment risk, develop trade facilitation strategies, and enhance enforcement; and,
        3. To serve as a resource for the broader trade community and CBP’s U.S. government partners.

        The CEEs continue CBP efforts to increase uniformity of practices across ports of entry, facilitate the timely resolution of trade compliance issues nationwide, and further strengthen critical agency knowledge on key industry practices. They represent CBP’s expanded focus on "Trade in the 21st Century," transforming customs procedures to align with modern business. By having the CEEs focus on industry-specific issues, CBP is able to provide tailored support to unique trading environments.

        The CEE for Apparel, Footwear, & Textiles officially opened for applications on June 3, 2013, with six initial companies, including some United States Fashion Industry Association (formerly USA-ITA) member companies. Dora Murphy, Director of the CEE for AFT, has said that CBP will continue to add companies to the CEE as they increase capacity and staff.

      • CAFTA-DR & Nicaragua TPL

        On August 5, 2004, the United States signed the Dominican Republic-Central America Free Trade Agreement (CAFTA-DR), which includes Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, and the Dominican Republic. According to USTR, CAFTA-DR is the first Free Trade Agreement between the United States and a group of smaller, developing economies and creates new economic opportunities and market access, especially in the textile and apparel industries.

        According to the U.S. Department of Commerce Office of Textiles & Apparel (OTEXA), Nicaragua was granted a Tariff Preference Level (TPL) that allows apparel made of certain cotton and man-made fiber to enter the U.S. duty free under CAFTA-DR if it’s assembled in Nicaragua, regardless of the origin of the fabrics. The TPL is limited to 100 million square meter equivalent units (SME) per year. The TPL will expire on December 31, 2014. 

        In addition, the TPL contains a “unique provision for woven trousers (categories 347/348 and 647/648),” says OTEXA. Nicaraguan trouser producers must use matching amounts of U.S. and foreign fabrics to make the trousers, and the fabrics must be matched one-for-one, and the amount of trousers that can be imported to the United States is capped.

        On June 11, 2013, Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) introduced legislation (S. 1136) to extend the Nicaragua TPL for 10 years, through 2024.

      • Generalized System of Preferences (GSP)
    • Committees
      • Cotton Board Advisory Committee

        The primary function of the Cotton Board Advisory Committee is to provide advice and guidance to the United States Fashion Industry Association (USFIA). The Committee offers recommendations for nominees to serve on the Cotton Board to ensure that brands, retailers, and importers are well-represented. When necessary, the Committee also discusses policies and procedures for the implementation of the Cotton Research and Promotion Program and makes recommendations for the USFIA Board of Directors if action is required. For more information on the Cotton Board, click here.

        Committee Composition: Representatives from USFIA Brand, Retailer, and Importer Members currently serving on the Cotton Board.

        Staff Liaison: Jana Kalish, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

      • Customs Committee

        The United States Fashion Industry Association (USFIA) Customs Committee works with USFIA Customs Counsel John Pellegrini to provide advice and recommendations on technical issues related to the supply chain, security, and all issues controlled by U.S. Customs & Border Protection (CBP). The Committee is regularly asked to review comments filed by USA-ITA and develop recommendations for CBP to consider improving and enhancing public-private sector partnership. The Committee recently reviewed comments on the Textile Enforcement and Security Act of 2011, and proposals for the development of the appropriate rules of origin for the Trans-Pacific Partnership.

        Committee Composition: Representatives from USFIA Brand, Retailer, and Importer Members.

        Staff Liaison: Samantha Sault, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.">

         

        Customs Committee Communications Archive (Committee Members Only)

      • Trade Policy Committee

        The United States Fashion Industry Association (USFIA) Trade Policy Committee reviews, discusses, and makes recommendations for association positions on trade policy. This Committee approves USFIA participation in industry coalitions and is often asked to analyze the effect of government actions on the industry. The Committee’s current issues include the negotiations for the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), China Currency Legislation, and CAFTA-DR fixes, to name a few.

        Committee Composition: Representatives from USFIA Brand, Retailer, and Importer Members.

        Staff Liaison: Samantha Sault, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

         

        Trade Policy Committee Communications Archive (Committee Members Only)

    • USFIA's 2014 Priorities

      The United States Fashion Industry Association's policy priorities for 2014 include:

      Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP)

      The United States Fashion Industry Association (USFIA) supports the negotiation of a high-standard Trans-Pacific Partnership agreement, with 21st-century rules and market access. We especially recommend a new approach to the Rules of Origin for textiles and apparel. Instead of focusing predominantly on the source of the yarns to determine which products are eligible for duty-free access, we ask for a more sophisticated approach to the negotiations that recognizes the importance of the global value chain. 

      Trans-Atlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP)

      The United States Fashion Industry Association (USFIA) supports the negotiation of a free trade agreement between the U.S. and the European Union. These negotiations should immediately eliminate all tariffs on day one of the agreement. In addition, the TTIP should eliminate technical and administrative barriers through regulatory convergence. 

      Remove Duties on Apparel

      It is simply shameful that struggling American families have to pay high taxes for babies’ and children's clothing, while the wealthy can import silk scarves with a 1.2 percent duty rate. Let's eliminate regressive taxes on middle class Americans and start lowering prices on basic apparel. 

      Extend African Growth & Opportunity Act (AGOA)

      The United States Fashion Industry Association (USFIA) supports an immediate extension of the duty-free benefits of the African Growth & Opportunity Act (AGOA).  We urge Congress to act to extend AGOA as soon as possible.   

      Extend Nicaragua TPL 

      The United States Fashion Industry Association (USFIA) supports S. 1136, the Nicaraguan Tariff Preference Level Extension Act of 2013. We urge Congress to act as quickly as possible to extend the TPL, which is scheduled to expire on December 31, 2014. Uncertainty about whether Congress will extend these CAFTA benefits will hurt Nicaraguan purchases of U.S. fabrics, as well as eliminate a key Western Hemisphere sourcing tool for U.S. apparel brands and retailers. 

      Expand the Apparel, Footwear and Textiles Center for Excellence & Expertise (CEE)

      The United States Fashion Industry Association (USFIA) supports the U.S. Customs and Border Protection initiative to expand the Centers for Excellence and Expertise (CEE) for Apparel, Footwear, & Textiles.

      Trade Promotion Authority

      The United States Fashion Industry Association (USFIA) supports congressional action to approve Trade Promotion Authority as soon as possible in 2014.  

      Cumulation for Free Trade Agreements

      The United States Fashion Industry Association (USFIA) supports negotiation of cumulation provisions with all Free Trade Agreements. The link between Free Trade Agreements will support sourcing opportunities with key trading partners and will encourage the development of global value chains between FTA partners. 

  • News

    The United States Fashion Industry Association (USFIA) sends a variety of exclusive publications to our members. These publications include:

    • Textile Development Memos

      USFIA Textile Development Memos are news and analysis by USFIA staff and counsel, sent on an almost-daily basis. TDMs are available exclusively for USFIA members and affiliates.

    • Customs Overviews

      USFIA Customs Overviews are monthly customs updates compiled by USFIA Customs Counsel John Pellegrini of McGuireWoods LLP. Customs Overviews are available exclusively for USFIA members and affiliates.

    • OFF THE CUFF

      OFF THE CUFF is the United States Fashion Industry Association's twice-monthly member newsletter, with featured guest articles, information on upcoming events, member and staff news, and more. OFF THE CUFF is available exclusively for USFIA members and affiliates, though some feature articles are open to the public.

    • International Affiliates News

      The United States Fashion Industry Association sends a twice-monthly newsletter to our International Affiliate subscribers. These publications are available exclusively for USFIA International Affiliates.

  • Join

    Why Join USFIA?

    The United States Fashion Industry Association (USFIA) represents the fashion industry:  textile and apparel brands, retailers, importers, and wholesalers based in the United States and doing business globally. Founded in 1989 as the United States Association of Importers of Textiles & Apparel with the goal of eliminating the global apparel quota system, USFIA now works to eliminate the tariff and non-tariff barriers that impede the industry’s ability to trade freely and create economic opportunities in the United States and abroad. Headquartered in Washington, D.C., USFIA is the most respected voice for the fashion industry in front of the U.S. government as well as international governments and stakeholders.  With constant, two-way communication, USFIA staff and counsel serve as the eyes and ears of our members in Washington and around the world, enabling them to stay ahead of the regulatory challenges of today and tomorrow. Through our publications, educational events, and networking opportunities, USFIA also connects with key stakeholders across the value chain including U.S. and international service providers, suppliers, and industry groups.

    USFIA (formerly the United States Association of Importers of Textiles & Apparel) was instrumental in eliminating the global apparel quota system. As our industry increasingly globalizes, new challenges arise every day. To remain focused and ensure that our work makes a positive impact on our members, we keep the following five values in mind with every decision we make.

    Integrity

    Our members tell us that we listen to them, support them, and defend them—while our government partners tell us that we work with them to find creative solutions.

    Substance

    We maintain and articulate a deep understanding of the industry and challenges most important to our members—the sourcing and compliance executives who make tough decisions every day on how to address these challenges.

    Focus

    We keep a laser focus on our mission, which allows us to be agile and quickly seize upon opportunities to move the needle.

    Collaboration

    Our members collaborate to share best practices and amplify the industry’s voice on the critical issues, putting aside marketplace competition to work together toward common goals.

    Foresight

    We keep our members informed not only about the regulatory challenges today, but also the regulatory challenges of tomorrow—and as our industry globalizes, we likewise expand our reach.

    USFIA offers your company a broad range of resources that enable you to better compete in today’s global market. To find out more about the benefits that are designed around your company’s needs, please click on one of the membership benefits options below.

    Membership dues are 95% tax deductible.

  • Uncategorised
  • Annual Conference

    The United States Fashion Industry Association (USFIA--formerly the United States Association of Importers of Textiles & Apparel (USA-ITA)--and the American Import Shippers Association (AISA) host an annual conference featuring discussions on customs, supply-chain logistics, transportation, sourcing, and other key issues that affect the textile and apparel importer community. The conference is held every November in New York City. 

  • Press

    The United States Fashion Industry Association's leadership is frequently quoted in articles about trade policy related to the textile and apparel importing industry. USFIA and our leadership and events have been featured in global publications including Women’s Wear Daily (WWD), Apparel Magazine, California Apparel News, Just-Style, Fibre2Fashion, and more. In addition, we frequently work with our members to cross-promote our content and events in their publications and blogs.

    For all media inquiries, contact Vice President of Communications Samantha Sault at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 202-419-0474.

    • In the News

      The United States Fashion Industry Association's (formerly USA-ITA) leadership is frequently quoted in articles about trade policy related to the textile and apparel importing industry. USFIA and our leadership and events have been featured in global publications including Women’s Wear Daily (WWD), Apparel Magazine, California Apparel News, Just-Style, Fibre2Fashion, and more. Below, you’ll find a list of recent articles featuring us.

       

    • Press Releases

      The United States Fashion Industry Association (USFIA) occasionally sends press releases about our activities and events. Below, you’ll find a list of recent press releases. For all media inquiries or to get on our press distribution list, contact Vice President of Communications Samantha Sault at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 202-419-0474.

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