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Prime Source ThinkTank launched
Oct '09
In collaboration with the American Apparel and Footwear Association (AAFA), the Worldwide Responsible Accredited Production (WRAP) and the Apparel and Footwear Committee of the American Chamber of Commerce (AMCHAM) in Hong Kong, APLF, which organises the annual Prime Source Forum, has launched the Prime Source ThinkTank, a new platform for discussion among senior executives of the international apparel industry.

Mr. Stephen Lamar, Executive VP of the AAFA, stated, “The global economic recession has triggered new calls for, and new fears of, protectionism. While the G20 continually calls for restraint, the US is about to discuss reforming its trade preference programmes, possibly creating new opportunities to source duty free apparel. However, current beneficiaries are resisting and policy-makers are grappling with complicated questions of conditionality.”

As Chair of a Prime Source ThinkTank discussion group, Lamar will initiate discussions on plans to tackle current trade policy issues. He said, “The Prime Source ThinkTank will allow the industry to talk with people who are following and affecting the top issues of the day, helping to generate dialogues 365 days a year.”

Mr. Michael Duck, Director of APLF Ltd., said, “Unlike other electronic platforms, the Prime Source ThinkTank is a social media platform that is designed to enable senior executives in the apparel industry to communicate with their peers in an electronic format that overcomes geographical constraints and is perfect for networking.

“There will be eight Prime Source ThinkTank discussion groups chaired by ten senior executives who are experts in specific areas. I am confident that our Chairs will stimulate and respond to discussions with their peers spontaneously. Thanks are due to all the 2009-2010 ThinkTank Chairs for the time and effort they have contributed to this international apparel platform,”he added.

Mr. Stuart Harbinson, Former Senior Adviser of the WTO and Chair of the Legal Affairs ThinkTank Group, said, “The textiles and clothing industry is at the cutting edge of modern business practices because it has to get the right product to the right market at the right time. The industry provides a product closely connected to people's livelihoods and cultures, yet has been subject to significant government regulatory activity. Although progress has been made recently, barriers to international trade in the sector are still higher than in many other sectors, giving producers, importers, exporters and retailers worldwide a strong common interest in regularly sharing information and ideas, and discussing the latest developments.The annual Prime Source Forum provides an ideal, possibly unique, framework for doing that, and I look forward to participating in the new and exciting Prime Source ThinkTank initiative.”

Mr. Michael Lavergne, who has been closely involved in Prime Source Forum activities, stated, “The Prime Source Forum has already built a solid reputation for bringing together key decision-makers from our industry.With the Prime Source ThinkTank,delegates have a real-time, social media tool to discuss many of the key issues facing them in a frank, confidential environment and this has tremendous value.”

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