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Safeguard Sought for Curtains, Drapes

An industry coalition is asking the U.S. government to place a safeguard restriction on imports of cotton and man-made fiber curtains and draperies from China.

Filing the safeguard petition with the Commerce Department were four groups: National Council of Textile Organizations, which stimulated the action, National Textile Association, American Manufacturers Trade Action Association and UNITE, an association of labor unions.

The petition covers products in quota categories 369/666. The Commerce Department's Committee for the Implementation of Textile Agreements has 15 days to decide whether to accept the petition, which would be about June 20, according to Karl Spilhaus, NTA president.

Quotas on curtains and draperies were lifted in 2002 and “there was a massive surge of imports,” said Mike Hubbard, vice president, NCTO. A key factor behind the petition filing, he added, was that since 2002 U.S. suppliers either were increasing sourcing offshore “or going away.”

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