Business Groups Release Report Highlighting Trade Benefits
WASHINGTON, May 20, 2021 – The United States Fashion Industry Association today joined eight other business organizations to release “Imports Work for American Workers,” an economic impact study which found that imports support more than 21 million American jobs.
The study focuses on the net impact of imports on U.S. jobs — including statistics on sectors such as retail, apparel, transportation, manufacturing and consumer technology. The study also looks at how imports support jobs in states across the U.S. as well as trade policy initiatives pending before Congress and the administration with the potential to preserve or diminish import-related jobs.
“USFIA supports Fashion Made Possible by Global Trade,” says Julia Hughes, President of the U.S. Fashion Industry Association. “American fashion brands and retailers rely on American workers for the research, product development and design, logistics, sourcing, sales teams and creativity to make the products that consumers want to wear. As the report says, ‘Bottom line: no matter where the label places the origin of the apparel product, the fact remains that it likely includes a lot of content from U.S. workers, in America.’”
Among the key findings:
- Imports support more than 21 million American jobs across the country, including a net positive number in every U.S. state. The 10 states accounting for the largest number of import-related jobs are California, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Texas and Virginia.
- Imports from key trading partners — including Canada, China, the European Union and Mexico — support a net positive number of U.S. jobs.
- Import-related jobs are good jobs that pay competitive wages. Nearly 8 million of the jobs related to importing are held by minorities and 2.5 million jobs are held by workers represented by unions.
- The vast majority (96 percent) of companies who import are small or medium-sized businesses.
- U.S. trade policies, many now pending before Congress and the administration, have the potential to both support and hurt these jobs.
The American Apparel and Footwear Association, the American Chemistry Council, the Consumer Technology Association, the National Foreign Trade Council, the National Retail Federation, the Retail Industry Leaders Association, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the U.S. Fashion Industry Association and the U.S. Global Value Chain Coalition commissioned the study, which was prepared by Laura M. Baughman and Dr. Joseph F. Francois of Trade Partnership Worldwide, LLC.
View the full report here.