WASHINGTON — House lawmakers prodded two top trade and State Department officials Thursday on increases in imports from Vietnam and reiterated calls for the inclusion of labor provisions if a bilateral textile and apparel pact is ever negotiated.

Rep. Sander Levin (D., Mich.) made it clear to Ralph Ives, assistant U.S. Trade Representative for Southeast Asia and the Pacific, that the U.S. must tie increases in market access to improvements in labor standards in a textile and apparel agreement. He made those statements during a House Ways and Means Trade Subcommittee hearing on whether Congress should reject the President’s annual renewal of Vietnam’s favorable duties and normal trade relations status.

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