WASHINGTON — Several U.S.-made women’s apparel items are included on the European Union’s latest list of U.S. products against which punitive tariffs might be levied as part of a brewing U.S.-EU trade war.
This story first appeared in the September 16, 2002 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
This list, a revision of an earlier one circulated among EU countries this week, will be narrowed by two-thirds after EU companies examine and rule out products they deem essential to business. They have until Nov. 12 to weigh in.
The World Trade Organization has given the EU permission to retaliate against $4 billion worth of U.S. exports. Earlier this year, the WTO ruled that a U.S. export tax break amounted to an illegal subsidy. The list now being circulated covers an estimated $12 billion in U.S. products.
This list includes U.S.-made women’s and girls’ suits and blazers, pajamas, track suits, gloves and mittens, blouses and shirts. Textile products include wool, cotton and man-made fiber fabrics and home furnishings.
The EU has said it won’t retaliate unless the U.S. changes the tax, which Congress is in the process of doing, but is far from completing. EU officials lately have expressed impatience and signaled they may go ahead and retaliate.
Charles Bremer, director of international trade at the American Textile Manufacturers Institute, said the test of what will eventually be contained on the list will be when EU companies evaluate it.
“I’ll be interested to see what entities in the European Union who import these products have to say,” Bremer said.