Clothing Suppliers Want Free Trade, Not Protectionism
Robert Bellafiore, The Daily Signal
A recent study shows that anti-trade rhetoric in the nation’s capital is worrying U.S. executives who represent clothing brands, retailers, importers, and wholesalers.
This rhetoric should concern the rest of us, too.
According to this U.S. Fashion Industry Association study, the “protectionist trade policy agenda in the United States” has emerged as the industry’s single biggest business challenge.
This is a major increase from last year, when protectionism—the attempt to protect specific domestic industries from foreign competition by taxing or otherwise restricting imports bought by other Americans—was only the 10th-highest business challenge.
Concerns about trade restrictions are both serious and widespread: 69 percent of respondents in the study ranked the protectionist trade policy agenda in their top five business challenges, well above the next highest-ranked concern.
Furthermore, the spike in concern about protectionism coincides with a sharp drop in optimism about the fashion industry overall.