AAFA Weekly Brief
May 1, 2018

Newsletter at-a-glance

Tariffs continue to be a hot-button issue, creating tension for the industry, as the Trump Administration sends leadership to China for meetings and decides to extend protection from steel and aluminum tariffs for specific trading partners. See more under Trade.
April 30: President Donald Trump will delay imposing steel and aluminum tariffs on the European Union, Mexico and Canada until June 1 as he finalizes deals with them, the White House said in a statement. (Source: Bloomberg)
April 29: Beijing is likely to suggest buying more American goods, but chances of a quick resolution of tensions are slim. (Source: Wall Street Journal)
April 26: Tensions have been high for trade, and there’s no sign of the trade war talk abating just yet. Describing the goings on between the U.S. and China on tariffs as a "schoolyard fight," Rick Helfenbein, president and CEO of the American Apparel & Footwear Association, said that trade wars don’t work. (Source: Sourcing Journal - article unlocked)
Naylor Association Solutions
Supply Chain
April 30: [China] remains the world’s biggest clothing exporter, but oversupply, high labour costs and rising protectionism have eroded its competitiveness (Source: South China Morning Post)
April 27: ... Multiple apparel groups representing some of the largest US and European brands, including Gap and H&M, have urged the government to drop charges against him. (Source: Phnom Penh Post)
April 24: ... If companies today focus their efforts on addressing labor pain points, engaging their workers in the change process and bridging an understanding, skills and trust gap, the intelligent factory may be fewer than five years away, Intel said. (Source: Supply Chain Dive)
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Brand Protection
April 29: ... The popularity of online review sites mean they are increasingly relied on by both businesses and their customers, with the government's Competition and Markets Authority estimating such reviews potentially influence £23 billion of UK customer spending every year. (Source: BBC)
April 27: The Trump administration on Friday labeled 36 countries as inadequately protecting U.S. intellectual property rights, keeping China on a priority watch list and adding Canada over concerns about its border controls and pharmaceutical practices. (Source: Reuters)
April 27: Guardian investigation finds knockoff items and used goods sold as new on Marketplace. (Source: The Guardian)
Naylor Association Solutions
Naylor Association Solutions

This week in Savannah: Today, more than 100 government contractors are gathering in Savannah, GA for AAFA’s Spring Government Contracts Committee (GCC) Meeting. This year’s meeting provides an opportunity to speak with their government customers and others in the supply chain; to discuss new requirements for uniforms, legislative efforts to support the Berry Amendment, and Made in USA initiatives; along with a visit to the Marine Recruit Depot at nearby Parris Island. Thank you to Gore Military, SourceAmerica, and Vibram for your dedication to supporting this event. Meet the committee leadership.

Collaboration with the Association of Industries of Haiti: Last week, AAFA took an important step in collaborating with the Association of Industries of Haiti (ADIH) to support the apparel and footwear industry in Haiti. The Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) signed on April 24 adds to our efforts to strengthen the longstanding ties between U.S. companies and Haiti’s manufacturing industry to promote mutually sustainable economic benefits. For more information, access the joint press release.

Representative Buddy Carter (R-GA 1st District) addresses more than 100 government contractors at AAFA’s Spring GCC Meeting today in Savannah, GA. AAFA President and CEO Rick Helfenbein with Association of Industries of Haiti (ADIH) President Georges B. Sassine — signing MOU on April 24 in Washington, D.C.

New supply chain tools & research: AAFA’s eleven committees and related working groups help forecast the needs for and develop best-in-class research and reporting tools for AAFA members. Most recently, we have released several new resources including:

  • AAFA North Korea Guidance (member-only)
  • Proposition 65 Warning Label Guidance (member-only)
  • Restricted Substance List (RSL) Version 19 (open-industry). A Spanish-language translation of the RSL Version 18 is now posted alongside the Vietnamese and Mandarin versions.
For more information, explore the website and contact membership@aafaglobal.org for additional access.

AAFA supports USTR release of Special 301: AAFA praised the release of the annual Special 301 Review by the Office of the United States Trade Representative (USTR) on April 27. This follows our submission of comments and testimony as part of the office's review of intellectual property challenges with trading partners.

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.
AAFA Events
May & June
May 10 Webinar: Children's Safety - Evaluating Potential Hazards
May 17 Webinar: Trends in Corporate Social Responsibility
May 23 Webinar: Addressing Forced Labor Risks
May 31 Product Safety Seminar
June 7 Member-Only Webinar: Preparing for Changes to California Prop 65 
Visit our events calendar for all AAFA webinars and industry events.

Looking for the latest in product safety?
Join AAFA in New York City for our
Product Safety Seminar on May 31 



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