By Arthur Friedman 

...From profitability problems among major shipping lines and continued concerns over manufacturing costs to intensified scrutiny in sustainability and uncertainty in trade policies, importers are facing a complicated world in 2012.

Speakers at the 23rd Annual Textile & Apparel Importer Trade & Transportation Conference at Bridgewaters at the South Street Seaport here laid out the complexities of global manufacturing facing an industry still mired in an economic malaise. There were some upbeat assessments among the more downcast tableau at this month’s event, organized by the U.S. Association of Importers of Textiles & Apparel and the American Import Shippers Association.

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