AAFA Weekly Brief
October 10, 2017
October 10: The [U.S. Chamber of Commerce] accused the Trump administration on Tuesday of making "poison pill proposals" to sabotage talks aimed at modernizing NAFTA, as negotiators began gathering in Washington for fresh trade talks. (Source: Reuters)
October 9: President Donald Trump and Republican congressional leaders unveiled a framework in September for far-reaching changes to the U.S. tax code. Now it’s up to the House and Senate tax-writing committees to turn the framework into legislation that can pass both houses. ... With Republicans holding 52 seats in the 100-member Senate, only a few defections could sink a bill – as happened to their failed efforts to repeal Obamacare. Here are issues that might divide Republicans. (Source: Bloomberg)
October 4: U.S. Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross published an important op-ed (with the headline "These NAFTA rules are killing our jobs") in The Washington Post on Sept. 22. In it, he claims to offer a serious analysis showing that the trade deficit with Mexico and Canada, and lower U.S. value-added in Mexican and Canadian U.S. imports, are proof the United States is losing under the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). ... The problem with the article, and the U.S. Department of Commerce paper it is based on, is that they cherry pick statistics out of the March 2017 Trade in Value-Added (TiVA) database by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) in an attempt to confirm the Trump’s administration bias that trade deficits are bad and lead to job losses. (Source: Forbes)
Supply Chain
October 10: The UN refugee agency says it is on full alert for a new escalation in the Myanmar crisis after more than 11,000 Rohingya Muslims crossed the border into Bangladesh on Monday. ... Last week, an average of 2,000 people a day crossed from Myanmar to Bangladesh. ... The UN has said that many of the new arrivals are traumatised after fleeing killings and burning villages. They have warned that thousands are at risk of water-borne diseases and some were injured after making the journey. (Source: BBC)
October 9: ... The biggest single age cohort today in the U.S. is 26-year-olds, who number 4.8 million, according to Torsten Slok, chief international economist for Deutsche Bank. People 25, 27 and 24 follow close behind, in that order. Many are on the verge of life-defining moments such as choosing a career, buying a house and having children. Companies looking to grab a piece of that business, however, have run into a problem. This generation, with its over-scheduled childhoods, tech-dependent lifestyles and delayed adulthood, is radically different from previous ones. They’re so different, in fact, that companies are developing new products, overhauling marketing and launching educational programs—all with the goal of luring the archetypal 26-year-old. (Source: Wall Street Journal)
October 5: Cambodia agreed on Thursday to raise the minimum monthly wage of workers in its crucial textiles and footwear industry by 11 percent to $170 from next year. ... The ministry said that new wage will come into effect on Jan. 1, 2018. (Source: Reuters)
Do you have a solid supply chain strategy?
Milgram Freight Services
Visit us online or call us for a consultation to learn more about what Milgram can do for you. Customs Brokerage Freight Forwarding North American Transport
Brand Protection
October 5: The public comments received by the US Trade Representative (USTR) in the run-up to this year’s Special 301 Out-of-Cycle Review of Notorious Markets have been published. ... [in its comments the American Apparel & Footwear Association cites] "meaningful dialogue... [that has] generated a better understanding of the challenges Alibaba faces and the resources it applies to tackle the unacceptably high level of counterfeits on its platforms", and notes that – while some still report high levels of infringing product and issues with takedown programmes – many members have reported improvements in terms of takedown procedures and timelines. (Source: World Trademark Review)
September 27: ... Around five or six years ago, Lopreiato began noticing counterfeits of the Forearm Forklift being sold on Amazon – a problem that increased as time went on. ... In many cases, these counterfeits were being sold as the genuine article and listed on the same pages as real Forearm Forklifts, with the same photos, the same descriptions, and the same reviews, and customers who bought them generally assumed that they were getting the genuine article. ... This isn’t just a problem for the genuine merchant due to the loss of sales and the pressure to lower prices, but also because the end consumer often has no idea that they received a counterfeit ... (Source: Forbes)
Naylor Association Solutions

In Brief

Tax policy update: In case you missed it, the Trump administration and Congressional leadership have released a nine-page plan outlining comprehensive reform to both the individual and corporate tax code. Included in the outline is the plan to lower the tax rate for pass-through businesses (small and family-owned) to 25 percent, while also lowering the corporate rate to 20 percent. Leadership in Washington are pushing to get tax reform through Congress and to the President's desk by end of year. Members with any questions or perspectives on how this plan will impact your business should contact Steve Lamar.

AAFA comments on Uzbek forced labor: On October 5, AAFA joined several other organizations in commenting on the Uzbek government decision to recall university students and some health and education workers from forced labor in the cotton fields. While this development is a positive step, AAFA has called for the complete end of government-orchestrated forced labor in Uzbekistan.

Special AAFA member offer for Pantone LLC products: As part of Pantone LLC’s affiliate membership with AAFA we are happy to announce a special discount. Members will receive 15% off products purchased on www.pantone.com by using the AAFA promo code. Login to learn more! Members may also be interested in our on-demand webinar recording "Color Boot Camp" now available in our Learning Center.

Quarterly Market Monitor: Each quarter, AAFA provides members with the Apparel and Footwear Market Monitor. With data by NPD Group, the reports provide AAFA members with critical insights around sales of apparel and footwear products in the U.S. market. They also share data about movements in the market that may impact your business and how you stack up against the competition. Members can download the 2nd Quarter 2017 edition from the Tools & Research section of AAFA's website (AAFA member login required). Stay tuned for the 3rd Quarter report, coming soon.

Feedback requested - what are the skill gaps facing the apparel industry? The apparel industry is being radically reshaped at incredible speed by the forces of technology, globalization and shifting consumer values. The pressure to deliver product better, faster, smarter has never been more extreme. And now organizations are facing unprecedented skill gaps and a changing context for how skills are acquired. Alvanon, along with supporting apparel organizations, is conducting the first ever state of the industry survey about skills required to propel the apparel industry forward. The insight garnered from the industry’s apparel leaders, will be published in 2018 to help inform talent development, business strategies, and address specific skills that employees need to learn.

See all of AAFA’s latest letters, comments, and testimony here.

Congress and government agencies solicit comments on a range of issues that may affect your business – find a list of comment opportunities here.

Member Welcome: Pantone

Pantone LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of X-Rite, Incorporated, is the world-renowned authority on color and provider of color systems and leading technology for the selection and accurate communication of color across a variety of industries. The PANTONE® name is known worldwide as the standard language for color communication from designer to manufacturer to retailer to customer.

Learn more about their new offering for AAFA members.

AAFA Events

October 11 Webinar: Spotlight on CSR - Moving the Industry Forward
October 19 AAFA Product Safety and Compliance Conference
October 25 Webinar: Sustainability - What Do Consumers Really Think?
October 26 AAFA Executive Think Tank in Hong Kong

Visit our events calendar for all AAFA webinars and industry events.
See you next week in Ho Chi Minh City?

Invite your supply chain partners to attend!



Search Past Editions | Advertise

We would appreciate your comments or suggestions.
Your email will be kept private and confidential.