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Second round of textile talks to kick off soon
By Dai Yan (China Daily)
Updated: 2004-02-26 09:14

US and Chinese officials are expected to meet soon for a second round of consultations on the US decision to impose quotas on imports of Chinese knit fabric, bras and dressing gowns, according to a source.

Both sides met on January 12 and 13 in Beijing to talk about the products' safeguard measures.

The US Committee for the Implementation of Textile Agreements (CITA) decided on November 18 to set quotas on the imports. Details of the imposed quotas will be decided after negotiation between the two sides.

The Bush Administration formally requested consultations with China on December 23.

China has restricted its shipments of the products to a level no higher than 7.5 per cent above the amount that entered the United States during the first year of the most recent 14 months preceding the request for consultations.

If the two sides cannot reach agreement by March 23, the quota limits for the categories concerned will remain in effect until December 23, the source revealed.

He said the United States has retracted the originally published requirement that shipments of the safeguard-affected goods be accompanied by an export visa and electronic visa information system transmission.

"CITA removed this requirement because Chinese negotiators refused to comply," the source said.

An official from the China Chamber of Commerce for the Import and Export of Textiles, who declined to be named, said the exports and prices of knit fabric, bras and dressing gowns have been registered by customs since January.

Exporters of the products have set up groups to dictate export quantities and prices, he said.

Chinese negotiators also met Peruvian officials on Tuesday to settle textile trade disputes.

Both sides are expected to reach a positive outcome before an interim safeguard measure on Chinese textile exports to Peru expires.

Peru started the 200-day-long safeguard measure on 106 Chinese textile imports on December 23.

The measure cuts Chinese imports of the products by 70 per cent year-on-year and volumes exceeding the cap will be subject to punitive duties. The Peruvian government will decide whether to extend the measure after it expires.

The European textile industry is also urging the European Union to clamp down on surging Chinese exports, over concerns China will grow to dominate the world's textile trade.

Industry leaders said they have planned a formal complaint to be handed to the European Commission.

But Chinese officials say such protectionism moves will benefit no one.

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