12 juni 2005

Textile agreement (The Flemish Beerdrinker)

The European Commission and China have reached an agreement on textiles. China will limit the exports of 10 categories of textile products. The deal will run for three years. After 2008 all these limits are supposed to end - forever. In the meantime European textile producers are urged to adapt. Of course this is supposed what they were doing over the past three decades. And they did adapt, in terms of employment at least. Employment is decreasing in the textile industry from the time that China still was taking Mao’s great leap backward. So don’t expect many textile jobs to be saved by this agreement. Past safeguards (the Multifiber Agreement) could not, the current one will neither. This agreement is bad for consumers and will not save employment in the textile industry. And now that China is running a trade surplus in capital goods, maybe those industries will try to get the same kind of deal aswell. Still something positive could come out of this deal: a trade war is averted and it should be the last one.

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