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AAFA urges US action to resolve India cotton export ban
Dec '10
The American Apparel & Footwear Association (AAFA) petitioned U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, U.S. Secretary of Defense Robert Gates, U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack, U.S. Secretary of Commerce Gary Locke, and U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk to take immediate action to stop the government of India from continuing its export ban on cotton or from extending the ban to cotton yarn or other products using cotton.

“Since April 2010, India has restricted or banned the export of cotton which has inflated the price of cotton all around the world to its highest price in 150 years,” said AAFA President and CEO Kevin M. Burke. “In the last eight months alone, the price of cotton has more than doubled to around $1.40 per pound. This will very soon translate into higher clothing and footwear prices for hardworking American families at a time when they can least afford it.”

“The skyrocketing price of cotton has also sent the domestic U.S. apparel, footwear, and textile manufacturing base that supplies the U.S. military into disarray,” Burke said. “The U.S. workers who outfit our servicemen and women for battle are scrambling to secure enough cotton to meet their obligations under existing contracts and fretting over future contracts that require prices to be stated upfront.”

Prior to the Indian government's ban on cotton exports in April 2010, India was the second largest exporter of cotton in the world. By imposing the export ban, the Indian government has created turmoil and panic in the world market. The Indian government's actions are blatantly discriminatory and clearly violate Article XI of the GATT agreement which prohibits export bans that benefit domestic industries. Specifically, India imposed the export ban for the sole purpose of artificially lowering prices on an integral input used by India's apparel and textile industries, industries which were already major competitors in the global market.

The American Apparel & Footwear Association (AAFA) is the national trade association representing apparel, footwear and other sewn products companies, and their suppliers, which compete in the global market. AAFA's mission is to promote and enhance its members' competitiveness, productivity and profitability in the global market by minimizing regulatory, commercial, political, and trade restraints.

The American Apparel & Footwear Association (AAFA)

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