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Still No Deal Between
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Federated to Axe Jobs
B2B Wales Event
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2005 Turkish Clothing Exports Up 17.5%
Lingerie Shop Owner Convicted
2005 Wearable Art Awards
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October 1, 2005
Women's Wear Journal
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Significant Progress Made During Textile Talks - But
Still No Deal Between U.S.
US industry groups said on Thursday that “significant progress” was made
in this week’s round of textile negotiations between the United States and
China – but that major issues were still outstanding between the two sides.
In a statement issued after three days of negotiations ended in Washington,
the American Manufacturing Trade Action Coalition (AMTAC), National Council of Textile
Organizations (NCTO) and National Textile Association (NTA) said the US textile industry remains steadfast in
its promise to walk away from any bad deal “because no deal is preferable to
a bad deal.”
Both sides have agreed to meet again in October to continue the negotiations.
The US textile industry wants China’s textile and clothing exports to the
United States to be limited to a percentage close to the WTO safeguard level of 7.5%
annually through the end of 2008.
China, however, wants higher limits and an agreement that would expire in 2007.
“China’s proposal is still unacceptable to the US textile industry in terms of
breadth of coverage and in length (number of years covered). Despite apparent
progress in the negotiations, no deal has been reached,” said American Manufacturing Trade Action Coalition
executive director Auggie Tantillo.
Other key sticking points for the US textile sector include the industry’s
ability to utilize the safeguard on categories not covered by the agreement
and growth levels given to China on covered product categories.
The industry groups also noted that the US government has until early November to make a decision on ten
safeguard cases covering knit fabric, wool trousers, sweaters, dressing gowns, curtains, socks, swimwear,
skirts, nightwear, and women’s woven shirts.
Another 13 cases covering cotton yarn, cotton trousers, manmade fiber trousers, cotton shirts, manmade
fiber shirts, men’s woven shirts, underwear, brassieres, and synthetic filament fabric, wool suits, manmade
fiber coats, polyester filament fabric, and cheesecloth are due for decision
in January 2006.
“If China is not willing to include all of these products in a comprehensive
agreement, we would urge the US government to impose safeguards on any categories
where safeguard petitions have been filed but were not covered by the deal,” said Karl Spilhaus, president of
the National Textile Association.
Models, Sam Benett and Rachel Ritfeld model in London's
Oxford Street the new Splendour lingerie, including the newly
launched cleavage enhancing Splendourbra
Federated To Axe Up To
6200 Jobs in 2006
Federated Department Stores unveiled plans to axe up to
6,200 jobs next year as part of a cost-cutting and re-branding exercise following the
completion of its $11.9 billion acquisition of May Department Stores.
The measures include changing all Foley’s and Marshall Field’s stores to
the Macy’s name in the autumn of 2006, in a move that will make Macy’s
Federated’s dominant national brand.
Federated, which also operates Bloomingdale’s, said it intends to sell The
Bridal Group, which includes 245 David’s Bridal, 454 After Hours Formalwear and 11
Priscilla of Boston stores.
It has yet to decide what to do with its Lord & Taylor division.
About 4,500 positions will be eliminated from March 2006 as Federated phases out May’s divisional operations in
Boston, Houston, Arlington, Va, and Los Angeles.
The remaining 1,700 cuts will be in St Louis at May’s corporate offices.
The company said the cuts “are all divisional office jobs,” rather than retail
The cuts and name changes are intended to build the nationwide Macy's and Bloomingdale's brands while
reducing costs by $175 million in 2006 and $450 million in 2007 and beyond, Federated said.
Federated, with corporate offices in Cincinnati and New York, now has 244,000 employees and stores in 49 states,
the District of Columbia, Guam and Puerto Rico.
Wage Claims Jump With
California garment workers have quadrupled the number of wage claims filed since the passage of an anti-sweatshop
law in 1999.
Between 2001 and 2004, workers filed 2,282 claims, compared with 565 between 1995 and 1998.
The average amount manufacturers paid to workers was just $673, and that overall, workers received an average
of only 31% of the money they seek from contractors and the manufacturers.
Wage violations continue in the industry, and that the state of California
must do more to force employers to comply with minimum-wage laws.
The anti-sweatshop law AB 633 was introduced to help workers recover back wages from garment factories and
from manufacturers that contract with the plants. It has had some success, with 75% of workers being able
to reach settlements of their claims.
New Anti-Counterfeit Bill
New legislation to plug loopholes in US anti-counterfeiting laws was
S 1699 – the Stop Counterfeiting in Manufactured Goods Act – aims to provide additional tools for US law
enforcement officials to stop the trafficking of counterfeit goods in the country.
Among other things, the legislation will criminalize the trafficking of counterfeit packaging, hangtags, and
labels, and will authorize the seizure of equipment used to make counterfeit articles.
Counterpart legislation has already passed the House.
American Apparel & Footwear Association (AAFA) president and CEO Kevin M Burke, said the Act “sets an important
precedent that can be replicated in future trade agreements to ensure our foreign partners are
stepping up their enforcement efforts as well.”
AAFA says that in the past 5 years, its members and Customs officials have seized millions of counterfeit
clothes and shoes. AAFA has been active in anti-counterfeit initiatives and is a member of the
Coalition Against Counterfeiting and Piracy.
AAFA is staging a two-day seminar in New York in mid-November – titled “Knock It Off” – to highlight US
and international anti-counterfeit activities and initiatives on the part of the private sector and the
China's July Clothing &
Textile Exports Jump 23.2%
China’s textile and clothing exports reached US$11.15
billion in July this year, up 23.2% year-on-year, according to customs statistics.
Textile and clothing imports dropped 2.6% to US$1.57 billion the General Administration of Customs said.
In the first seven months of 2005, exports were valued at US$61.5 billion,
up 21.4%, while imports were up 1.3% to US$9.75 billion.
Within this total, textile exports were valued at US$22.8 billion, up 22.8%
year-on-year and garments at US$38.7 billion, up 20.5%. Exports of knitted garments
grew 17.7%, while woven garments were up 23.5%.
The export of garments to Europe grew 71% and to the United States by 86% in the January-July period.
However, the growth of textile and clothing exports to the United States slowed to 62% in July.
China’s textile and clothing exports to the EU, on the other hand, increased by 84.9% in June and 85.4% in
In the first seven months of this year, exports to the EU grew by 62.6%, over ten percentage points higher than
at the beginning of the year. But exports are expected to plunge in August after the EU announced new
measures to cap Chinese imports.
The United States and EU are the main export destinations for China’s textile and clothing products.
The growth of exports to non-quota regions stayed flat at 5.8%. Bucking this trend, exports to Russia grew 40%
and to Japan by 6.4%.
Sun Capital to Buy Sara Lee
Branded Apparel Europe?
US consumer products group Sara Lee is on the verge of selling its Sara
Lee Branded Apparel Europe division to the US investment fund Sun Capital.
The sale price is expected to be less than €500 million – just over a third
of the €1.4 billion original asking price.
The division’s brands include the French underwear label Dim as well as
Wonderbra, Playtex and Gossard.
Sun Capital specializes in business turnarounds and so far this year has acquired Lee Cooper jeans and French
refrigerated transport company Nexia.
Sara Lee Corp decided to sell its European apparel operations following a ‘strategic review’ of its
business last summer.
The Chicago-based company wants to focus instead on its food, beverage and household products.
In September it said it was unlikely to sell its European apparel business as
originally planned, although talks with potential buyers were in progress.
As well as putting its European apparel business on the block, Sara Lee wants to spin-off its $4.6 billion
Branded Apparel Americas/Asia business, which includes such brands as Hanes underwear, Bali and Playtex bras
and Champion active wear.
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