AAFA Weekly Brief
October 25, 2016
Supply Chain
October 23: Hanjin Shipping Co., South Korea’s largest container line that has put its Asia-U.S. business on sale after filing for bankruptcy protection late August, won approval from a court to wind down its European operations as demand for its services to the continent slumped. The judge overseeing Hanjin’s receivership at the Seoul Central District Court approved the firm’s request, a court spokesman said. Hanjin will close all its 10 branches in Europe, including its regional headquarters in Germany, the container line’s spokeswoman said separately on Monday. The Seoul-based company expects to start the process as early as this week, she said. (Source: Bloomberg)
October 21: Today’s executives are dealing with a complex and unprecedented brew of social, environmental, market, and technological trends. These require sophisticated, sustainability-based management. Yet executives are often reluctant to place sustainability core to their company’s business strategy in the mistaken belief that the costs outweigh the benefits. On the contrary, academic research and business experience point to quite the opposite. (Source: Harvard Business Review)
October 18: With Halloween around the corner, retail-industry groups are screeching for court relief after a Long Island county adopted tough regulations on toys containing hazardous materials. Set to take effect on Dec. 1, Suffolk County's Toxic Free Toys Act regulates the content of various chemicals, including toxins such as arsenic, lead and mercury, for any children's toys sold in the county. ... Industry groups contend in an Oct. 14 complaint, however, that such enforcement is pre-empted by the Federal Hazardous Substances Act and the Consumer Product Safety Act. (Source: Courthouse News Service)
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October 24: The American Apparel & Footwear Association's President and CEO Rick Helfenbein speaks with CNBC's Bernie Lo about international trade policy, and what it could look like following the 2016 Presidential Elections. (Source: CNBC Asia, Squawk Box)
October 24: The US has extended its generalized system of preferences to a new product – travel goods – but despite being a strong player in the segment, Bangladesh will miss out on the opportunity as the trade benefit is currently suspended for the country. ... Rick Helfenbein, president and CEO of American Apparel and Footwear Association, in a public hearing last week said although allowing GSP for travel goods to Myanmar and other AGOA countries is a good step, they are relatively small and incapable of supplying the goods as per required demand. ... "Keep in mind, this is a two-billion-unit industry but only 200,000 units in total came from AGOA ... that's not even 1 percent," Helfenbein said. (Source: The Daily Star)
October 24: It is a critical time for the United States. As the steward of the global economy we have a unique opportunity to drive economic growth, while advancing human rights around the world. If passed, the Trans-Pacific Partnership will do both, but time is running out. Beyond its potential to grow our economy, TPP will enable unprecedented protections for workers around the world. Both economically and morally, the trade pact is win-win. (Source: The Hill)
October 17: Today, according to the Lesotho Textile Exporters Association, about 80% of Lesotho's textile and garment exports go to the U.S. With 44,000 employees, the garment industry is the country’s largest private sector employer. There are other ‘Made in Africa’ success stories that have emerged since AGOA was introduced in 2000 and extended by 10 years in September 2015. According to the 2016 AGOA report released by the Office of the United States Trade Representative, non-oil exports to the United States under AGOA nearly tripled from $1.4 billion in 2001 to $4.1 billion in 2015. Automobiles from South Africa and apparel from Kenya, Lesotho, Mauritius, and Swaziland were the leading exports. (Source: CNBC Africa
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Brand Protection
October 25: [Vietnam's] Ministry of Science and Technology has ordered an investigation into chaotic scenes where staff and members of the public were recorded taking away fake fashion products which were earmarked for destruction. ... On October 21, the ministry's inspectors and the Hanoi Police Department for Economic Management seized up to 2,349 fake fashion products. The products included 726 bags; 1,057 wallets; 39 belts; 6 watches, 19 bracelets, and 290 logos which imitated international famous brands like Dior, Hermes and Louis Vuitton. (Source: VietNamNet)
October 24: ... Alibaba staged an eight-hour fashion show [Sunday], with 200 models wearing 80 brands, as part of the e-commerce company’s run up to the Nov. 11 shopping blitz known as Singles’ Day in China. ... The fashion show also was an opportunity for Alibaba to build better relationships with foreign brands, many of which warily eye the company. On the one hand, Alibaba’s sites control about three quarters of e-commerce in China and provide a partnership few can avoid. Tmall is Alibaba’s platform for brands like Nike and Costco to sell directly to consumers. But Alibaba’s other major shopping site, Taobao, which has 9 million small independent sellers and an eBay-type business model, has been heavily criticized by brands for its proliferation of counterfeit products. (Source: Fortune)
Naylor Association Solutions

In Brief
Help AAFA and K.I.D.S/Fashion Delivers raise one million pairs!
AAFA has partnered with K.I.D.S./Fashion Delivers to supply one million pairs of socks to the nation’s homeless. Donations began on October 10, in honor of World Homeless Day, and will continue throughout the next 12 months. Individuals and groups are encouraged to show their support on social media using #OneMillionPairs. More information is available at www.onemillionpairs.org.

Congratulations to the Doneger Group!
We congratulate Abbey Doneger and the entire Doneger Group for 70 years in business. Thank you for your dedication to the industry!

Product Safety updates: On October 18, AAFA along with nearly four dozen trade associations sent a letter to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) in opposition to the Commission’s announcement to resume consideration of the final rules on Voluntary Remedial Actions and Guidelines for Voluntary Recall Notices and Disclosure Under Section 6(b) of the Consumer Product Safety Act. Signatories of the letter object to the proposed rules on the grounds that they exceed the Commission’s statutory authority. The letter urges the Commission to withdraw the rules and work with stakeholders to craft reforms that improve the ability to best protect consumers while minimizing burdens on both the CPSC staff and other impacted parties.

Reminder, AAFA maintains a list of every fashion and fashion-accessory related notice for the past six years in the AAFA Prop 65 "60-Day Notice" running list.

AAFA responds to Alibaba USTR submission: AAFA submitted rebuttal comments to The Office of the United States Trade Representative (USTR) on Friday, October 21, directly responding to a filing by Alibaba in connection with the 2016 Notorious Markets Report. The full submission is available here .

Meet AAFA’s Social Responsibility Committee: AAFA’s Social Responsibility Committee (SRC) identifies and studies global social responsibility issues and trends that affect the U.S. apparel and footwear industry, meets regularly to discuss these issues, and develops shared best practices. The next SRC meeting will take place November 30 in New York. Members can join by emailing membership@aafaglobal.org. Read more on the subject of social responsibility with Nate Herman’s recent article, "Beyond Compliance: The Social Responsibility Quest" here.

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.

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AAFA Events
October & November
Oct. 26 Hong Kong AmCham Address: Strategic Imperatives for 2016 and Beyond - Insights from AAFA
Oct. 27 Hong Kong Executive Summit 2016 (click here to meet the speakers!)
Nov. 3 Webinar: Give Consumers What They Want! Responsibly & Transparently Sourced Apparel & Footwear
Nov. 10 Webinar: The Elections - An Initial Look for AAFA Members
Nov. 16-17 Government Relations Full Committee Meeting and Day on the Hill
Nov. 29 Fall 2016 Environmental Committee Meeting
Nov. 30 Fall 2016 Social Responsibility Committee Meeting
Nov. 30 Knock it Off! Brands & the Counterfeiting Quandary Workshop

Join AAFA in Vietnam!

Members & suppliers are invited to join AAFA for two days in Ho Chi Minh City Nov. 14-15


Visit our events calendar for all webinars and industry events. Be sure to save the date for AAFA's Executive Summit: March 1-3, 2017 at the newly remodeled Watergate Hotel in Washington, D.C. 

Other Industry Events 
November 30, 2016 | New York, NY 

Two Ten Footwear Foundation, the national charitable foundation of the U.S. footwear industry, will host its 77th annual VIP Dinner and Gala on November 30, 2016. The evening of philanthropy and entertainment will be held at the legendary Hammerstein Ballroom in New York City’s Manhattan Center. Click here for more information.



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