Policy Priorities
International Trade

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EBCA outlines position on EU-Vietnam free trade negotiations to EC President Barroso

EBCA sent a letter to José Manuel Barroso ahead of his official visit to Vietnam in August 2014 where the association set out the priorities for the apparel, clothing and footwear sector in the ongoing negotiations for a Free Trade Agreement (FTA) between the EU and Vietnam. The position paper caught the attention of trade media including Just-Style, Textilwirtschaft and Journal du Textile in which articles were published displaying the stakes in the potential trade agreement as well as EBCA’s priorities within the framework of the FTA.

The priorities for EBCA are the following:

  • Full and immediate elimination of duties on apparel without phase-out periods.
  • Rules of Origin should be clear, transparent and easily applicable, not imposing any additional burden and delays.
  • Removal of Non-Tariff Barriers (NTBs) and market access restrictions to ensure the best possible climate for EU investors.
  • Classification of goods: Textiles and apparel – Vietnam’s main export sectors - should not be classified as “sensitive products” by the EU.
  • Improved trade facilitation: More efficient and simplified customs procedures to accelerate the release and customs clearance of goods.

EBCA welcomes the trade negotiations between the EU and Vietnam and believes that if the EU and Vietnam are able to negotiate an agreement which accommodates these various requirements for the textile and apparel sector a huge benefit will accrue to both sides. Such a deal would set an important new precedent which recognises the global value chains operated in our industry, and the economic value they bring to all parties.

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