March 24, 2010                                                                                             Contact: Lisa Keyser, 202-638-7640

For Immediate Release                                                                                  Brenda A. Jacobs, 202-736-8149


Apparel Importer Association Urges Collaborative, Positive Approach

To U.S.-China Relations

               A major association of U.S. importers and retailers of apparel today urged the Administration and the Congress to pursue a collaborative and positive approach to solve concerns about the trade deficit the United States is running with China. “Threats of unilateral U.S. action and ‘name and shame’ strategies risk escalating problems when we need to be focused on fixing them. The Administration, along with the leadership of other trading partners, should be working hand in hand with China to expand consumer demand there and further open that market as a primary strategy for reducing both the bilateral and global trade deficit with China,” Julia K. Hughes, president of the U.S. Association of Importers of Textiles and Apparel (USA-ITA) said today following a hearing by the House Committee on Ways and Means on China’s exchange rate policy.

“An increase in the value of China’s currency is not going to solve the U.S. trade deficit, since supply chains are global and imports from other countries would no doubt fill any void,” Hughes noted.  “The Administration and the Congress need to pursue a more comprehensive strategy with China, one that focuses on each government addressing the many causes of the deficit.”

Hughes credited the new Ways and Means Chairman, Sander Levin, for holding a hearing designed to identify the multiplicity of causes of the U.S. trade deficit with China, and the witnesses at the hearing, for agreeing that a rush to legislation is not appropriate. 


Established in 1989, USA-ITA represents more than two hundred companies, including apparel manufacturers and brands, distributors, retailers, importers, and related service providers, such as shipping lines and customs brokers.  USA-ITA member companies source apparel and other textile products globally, responding to the demands of the U.S. consumer market for quality products timely delivered at the right price.  Many USA-ITA members also are actively looking to expand their presence in markets outside the United States, including in Asia, where there is a vibrant and promising consumer market.