AAFA Weekly Brief
March 5, 2019

Newsletter at-a-glance

AAFA formally announced its support for the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) on Monday. More information is available under AAFA News.
March 5: US President Donald Trump has announced that he [will end] India's $5.6 billion trade concessions under the Generalised System of Preferences (GSP) programme ... The American Apparel and Footwear Association said in a written testimony that if GSP benefits are withdrawn for India as well as Indonesia and Thailand, "companies will have no choice but to return to sourcing from China". (Source: Business Standard - India)
March 4: ... The American Apparel & Footwear Association (AAFA) on Monday announced its full support for quick passage by Congress of the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA). (Source: Sourcing Journal - login required)
March 4: ... “Everybody wants to see this whole tariff debacle go away,” [said Rick Helfenbein, president and CEO of the American Apparel & Footwear Association]. “Many companies are reducing their exposure to mainland China.” (Source: South China Morning Post)
March 1: ... “As you look at the way these negotiations are shaping up, you must certainly think: not only will it take a while for the talks to reach their full conclusion, but there’s going to be enforcement mechanisms,” said Steve Lamar, executive vice president of the American Apparel and Footwear Association. “I would imagine punitive tariffs are going to be with us for a while.” (Source: Reuters)
Naylor Association Solutions
Supply Chain & Manufacturing
February 28: ... An increasing number of brands are incorporating sustainability initiatives into their business strategies, but the back end can sometimes be overlooked in favor of more marketable programs. However, as supply chain transparency becomes an expectation, many companies may find themselves left behind by their savvier competitors. (Source: Footwear News)
February 27: ... The open-industry resource is available for all industry professionals and is updated to reflect additions or changes to regulations and laws that restrict or ban certain chemicals in finished products. (Source: just-style - login required)
February 27: ... The Army, Coast Guard, Navy and Marines will all get the shoes in the coming months. From now on, some 250,000 pairs will be distributed to recruits every year. (Source: Texas Public Radio)
Supply chains don’t have to be complicated?
Customized Brokers, a Crowley Company
Customized Brokers, adds velocity and value to the apparel supply chain. As a single-source, total supply chain solutions provider, we have developed ways to more efficiently manage the complexities of importing both textiles and apparel. We have dependable, compliance-driven teams that keep abreast of regulations on this constantly evolving market.
To connect with one of our specialists, click here.
Brand Protection
March 1: ... the fact that the FTC brought the case has already sparked speculation that the case sets the precedent that the federal government is now willing to bring charges against companies that pay for fake reviews making misleading claims. (Source: CNBC)
February 28: Amazon.com Inc. is starting to let brand owners delete listings on its site for products they deem fake, marking a sharp shift in its struggle to fight counterfeiters that cedes some of its responsibility to other companies. (Source: Wall Street Journal)
February 27: ... Along with reporting its year-end earnings for the 2018 fiscal year, this particular SEC filing was notable because Amazon officially acknowledged to shareholders that the company’s online sales platforms face the risk of being found liable for fraudulent or unlawful activities of sellers on those platforms. This includes the company’s first-ever concession that Amazon may be unable to prevent sellers trafficking counterfeit and pirated goods. (Source: IP Watchdog)

AAFA urges Congress to pass USMCA: AAFA formally announced its support for the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) with a press release urging Congress to quickly approve and implement the agreement on Monday. AAFA also emphasized the need for a seamless transition from NAFTA, as more than 200,000 American jobs in the apparel and textile industry rely on the agreement.

Modernizing customs for the 21st century: On March 1, AAFA provided testimony during U.S. Customs and Border Protection's 21st Century Customs Framework hearing. AAFA emphasized the need to evolve trade facilitation and enforcement measures to reflect today's global supply chain. AAFA's written submission is available here.

Preventing the sale of counterfeits: On February 27, AAFA testified as part of the Office of the United States Trade Representative's annual Special 301 review to identify countries that deny adequate and effective protection of intellectual property rights or deny fair and equitable market access to U.S. persons and businesses. AAFA's written submission is available here.

AAFA's Christina Mitropoulos discusses the association's brand protection efforts.

AAFA signs letter to President regarding tariffs: On February 27, AAFA signed onto an Americans for Free Trade coalition letter to the President, welcoming his decision to delay the planned tariff hike on U.S. imports from China and emphasizing the need for a deal that removes uncertainty and tariff costs.

Update your AAFA Made in USA directory profile: Do you make products in the USA? Member companies are encouraged to update their profile in AAFA's Made in USA directoryLaunched in 2014, the Made in USA directory has become an increasingly important tool as companies look to source more apparel, footwear, and accessories – and the inputs that go into those articles – in the United States. Questions can be directed to AAFA's Steve Lamar and Sarah Vincent.

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: Tennier Industries, Inc.

Tennier Industries, Inc. is a leading U.S. military contractor for technically constructed performance uniform items, equipment and sleep systems. Tennier Products are deployed in all mission-critical environments and are issued as fundamental gear in ensuring today’s modern soldier’s comfort and, in many cases, survival. Over the last 30 years, Tennier has been consistently identified by the government as a “Best Value” supplier based on such parameters as superior quality, price, past performance and the ability to timely produce Surge quantity requirements. As a result of these attributes, combined with the Company’s close partnership with the military, Tennier has set the industry benchmark for product innovation, quality and customer service.

AAFA Events
March & April
March 6 Webinar: New Changes to REACH & What You Need To Know, NOW
March 13 Board of Directors Meeting and Capitol Hill Visit
March 13-15 AAFA Executive Summit
April 9 Webinar: Maximizing Your Online Brand Protection
April 15 American Image Awards
April 24 Webinar: Gaining Global Visibility, How Targus Powers Up Pro
April 30 Government Relations Committee Meeting
April 30-May 1 Global Supply Chain & Trade Conference

Visit our events calendar for all AAFA webinars, scheduled events, and member/committee calls.

Find out what is going on in Washington at the
AAFA Executive Summit, March 13-15.


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