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Philippine govt strongly pushing for SAVE Act

Nov '11
The Philippine Government is once again strongly pushing its case for earning preferential treatment for Philippine garments to the US.

During the visit of US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton to Manila, the Philippine Government tried hard to revive the bill that would earn preferential access for Philippine garments in the US, subject to the condition that these garments are made while using US raw material.

The Philippine Trade Undersecretary Cristino Panlilio said the bill for Save Our Industries (SAVE) Act exists, though it does not form a part of the US Congress's list of priority measures, or included as a proviso of the free trade agreements that the US President Barack Obama inked towards October end this year to the advantage of Panama, South Korea and Colombia.

The Trade Undersecretary said the visit of Secretary Clinton to Philippines strengthened her support for the bill and hoped that she would further persuade the members of Congress to pass the bill.

Mr. Panlilio said that during his recent visit to the US, he won support of 20 Congressmen and is now looking forward to win support of five senators. He also met the Filipino-American communities in Seattle, Chicago, Los Angeles and New York, and said that all these communities showed willingness to push for the bill.

He further revealed that in order to lobby for passage of the bill, senior commercial counsellor of Philippines, Romulo Manlapig is to organize a big rally of Filipino-American communities before the US Congress, during late November.

He said that they expect that by November end the bill would be included in the Senate by itself, failing which, they would once again table it with other trade bills.

However, he said that the proposed bill may be taken up with slight amendments like there are chances of reduction in number of categories under the cut-and-sew segment.

The proposed bill is believed as the most crucial economic initiative linking the US and the Philippines in the past 50 years.

Fibre2fashion News Desk - India

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