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Quotas on Chinese textile imports fasten internal ties

Jun '07
When Government imposed import quotas on Chinese textile categories, last year, many domestic retailers and manufacturers opposed the move.

However, Department of Trade and Industry's (dti) Budget Vote, Minister Mandisi Mpahlwa says that the policy has brought local players closer and strengthened collaboration among them.

He explained that textile industry was one of the most significant sectors in the country and provided huge job opportunities. Hence, it was important for the Administration to ensure its protection and development, while the cheap Chinese imports were only hindering its growth.

Mpahlwa stressed that as a result of quotas the relations among stakeholders had improved greatly, which was vital for overall expansion of textiles.

He said, "We have moved quite a long way in achieving that kind of consensus and I think that the issue of quotas did introduce an element where some of the stakeholders no longer felt that they are bound by the consensus that we had reached."

Though these quotas have solved several issues and fortified internal cooperation, not all problems can be cracked by them. Minister said that domestic industry needed to bring about prominent changes in management and other activities. Government also should draft beneficial schemes.

Talking about South Africa's efforts to enter Chinese markets, he said, “There is scope ... we just have to work a lot more systematically in ensuring that theentry of [South African] value-added products into the Chinese market is a lot stronger."

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