Joint Assoc Statement on New DHS Textile Trade Enforcement

The following statement is on behalf of the American Apparel & Footwear Association, the National Retail Federation, the Retail Industry Leaders Association, and the United States Fashion Industry Association in response to today’s announcement by the Department of Homeland Security regarding new enforcement actions to crack down on allegations of illicit textile trade.
“We appreciate the Department of Homeland Security (DHS)’s announcement today outlining enhanced enforcement activities to prevent illicit trade in textiles. Our members support 55 million (more than one in four) American jobs and invest considerable time and resources in their customs compliance programs. Many of our members are Tier 3 participants in Customs-Trade Partnership Against Terrorism (C-TPAT). They are trusted traders and meet the high standards required to receive that designation by U.S. Customs and Border Protection and DHS. Our members are on the front lines for ensuring that they have safe and secure supply chains.
“While DHS launches this enforcement plan, we urge it to partner with our associations and our associations’ members. A successful enforcement plan must include input from all stakeholders, clear communication with the trade, and coordinated activities with importers, especially if DHS finds illicit activity happening in the supply chain. The results of any illicit activities must be shared so that our members and other importers can act quickly to address the issue. As our members look to diversify their supply chains, especially back to the Western Hemisphere, we must make sure efforts are included to incentivize and not deter new investments.

“We look forward to working with DHS and the key agencies to ensure these enhanced enforcement activities are successful in stopping illicit shipments while facilitating compliant trade.”

About AAFA
The American Apparel & Footwear Association (AAFA) is the national trade association representing apparel, footwear and other sewn products companies, and their suppliers, which compete in the global market. Representing more than 1,000 world famous name brands, AAFA is the trusted public policy and political voice of the apparel and footwear industry, its management and shareholders, its more than three million U.S. workers, and its contribution of $470 billion in annual U.S. retail sales. AAFA drives progress on three key priorities: Brand Protection; Supply Chain & Sourcing; and Trade, Logistics, & Manufacturing. AAFA approaches this work through the lens of purpose-driven leadership in a manner that supports each member’s ability to build and sustain inclusive and diverse cultures, meet and advance ESG goals, and draw upon the latest technology.

About NRF
The National Retail Federation passionately advocates for the people, brands, policies and ideas that help retail succeed. From its headquarters in Washington, D.C., NRF empowers the industry that powers the economy. Retail is the nation’s largest private-sector employer, contributing $5.3 trillion to annual GDP and supporting more than one in four U.S. jobs — 55 million working Americans. For over a century, NRF has been a voice for every retailer and every retail job, educating, inspiring and communicating the powerful impact retail has on local communities and global economies.

About RILA
Retail Industry Leaders Association (RILA) is a trade association of the world’s largest, most innovative, and recognizable retail companies and brands.  RILA members include more than two hundred retailers, product manufacturers, and service suppliers, who together employ over 42 million Americans and account for $2.7 trillion in annual sales and hundreds of thousands of stores, manufacturing facilities, and distribution centers domestically and abroad.

The United States Fashion Industry Association (USFIA) is dedicated to fashion made possible by global trade. USFIA represents textile and apparel brands, retailers, importers, and wholesalers based in the United States and doing business globally; working to eliminate tariff and non-tariff barriers that impede the industry’s ability to trade freely and create economic opportunities in the United States and abroad with the goal of doing what we can to make the world a better place for our customers, our colleagues, and our suppliers.
  • International Trade
  • Keeping Supply Chains Open & Resilient
  • Public Policy
  • Supply Chain

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