NCTO Pushes Yarn-Forward Rule at TTIP Negotiations
May 30, 2014

The National Council of Textile Organizations (NCTO) made a formal stakeholder presentation at the fifth negotiating round of the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) in Arlington, Va. The presentation highlighted key U.S. textile industry positions including the need for a yarn forward rule of origin and the preservation of U.S. government procurement regulations such as the Berry Amendment.

Earlier in the week, NCTO staff met with their European Union (EU) counterpart, the European Apparel and Textile Confederation (EURATEX). EURATEX is the voice of the European textile and apparel sector, employing 1.6 million workers. The discussions reviewed the two groups' overall goals in regard to TTIP along with whether there is the potential to reach a joint US/EU textile industry position on specific TTIP issues.

"The effort to establish a comprehensive free trade agreement between the United States and the EU marks the first time U.S. manufacturers and exporters may be able to enjoy Free Trade Agreement access to an overseas market that rivals our own," said Augustine Tantillo, NCTO president and chief executive officer. "We look forward to a productive and collaborative relationship with EURATEX and other European industry groups in hopes of reaching mutually beneficial positions under the TTIP."

TTIP is an effort to establish a free trade bloc between the United States and the 28 member nations of the EU. The TTIP negotiations present a unique set of opportunities and challenges for the U.S. textile industry. While the U.S. and EU textile and apparel markets may be similar in market size and cost structure, the U.S. trade deficit with the EU in those products totaled almost $3 billion in 2013.

Reprinted in part from Apparel News