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NCTO welcomes reintroduction of textile enforcement bill
Aug '11
National Council of Textile Organizations (NCTO) President Cass Johnson has welcomed the reintroduction and tabling of the Textile Enforcement and Security Act (TESA) bill before the US Congress.

The TESA bill is aimed at boosting enforcement activities under the U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) and to facilitate trade by means of better targeting, enhanced resources and better authority.

Mr. Johnson thanked Congressmen who took the lead on the vital issue and added that over the recess, they even propose to work with Senator Hagan to table the companion bill before the Senate.

He said sound implementation of the trade laws is vital to generate and preserve employment opportunities in rural areas and small towns where the NCTO members are functional.

He further said that over the last ten years, the US industry and the workers therein have seen a radical rise in redundancy rate due to Customs fraud as deceitful producers and importers have with time located the loopholes in the country's enforcement rules and regulations.

In the meanwhile, the resource allocations for countering textile frauds have been trimmed down considerably by the US Customs.

Deceitful practices include illegally importing or exporting goods to evade Customs duty, wrongfully claiming FTA preference, declaring less than the actual value of goods and creating front or ghost firms that claim to be US producers.

Such practices not only cause job losses on home front but even defraud the country's Government of over one billion USD in duty and penalty evasion each year, the NCTO President exclaimed.

CBP accumulates more than US$ 30 billion annually by way of revenues, which makes it the second biggest contributor of revenue to the US exchequer. Around 42 percent, i.e. over US$ 12 billion of these duties come from textile imports.

The TESA bill proposes to answer many of the key issues by giving enhanced authority to the US Customs to target these goods in a better fashion. It seeks to provide additional means and resources to intensify the commercial enforcement efforts of the CBP and lessen the frequency of the malpractices that are harming the US textile industry.

Increasing the number of trained import specialists in textiles and clothing verification at 15 leading ports of the US, is among the provisions included in the bill.

The legislation would authorise the Government to disclose the names of the companies which deliberately infringe the clauses of the trade agreements.

It would authorise the Department of Treasury and Department of Homeland Security to utilise the sums collected by way of fines and penalties to pay for the investigations and/or training expenses that are directly co-related.

It would advise the US Government for instituting an electronic verification programme which can keep a track of yarn and fabric inputs in FTA nations.

Moreover, the bill contains proposals to set up a Textile and Apparel New Importer Programme, a Non-resident Importer Programme, and a Textile and Apparel Manufacturing and Supplier Registry.

Fibre2fashion News Desk - India

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