TEXTILE, IMPORT GROUPS CHEER EIZENSTAT COMMERCE NOMINATION
Byline: Jim Ostroff
WASHINGTON — Both U.S. textile and apparel import industry officials Wednesday hailed President Clinton’s announcement Wednesday that he is nominating Stuart Eizenstat, a prominent international trade and U.S. industry expert, to be one of the administration’s top international trade policy leaders.
Eizenstat, 52, who currently is the U.S. Representative to the European Union in Brussels, will become Undersecretary of Commerce for International Trade if confirmed by the Senate. He will succeed Jeffrey Garten, who resigned last year to head Yale University’s School of Public and Private Management.
“We are…greatly encouraged by his views that U.S. government efforts should focus on opening foreign markets, because our strategy for growth is to export more textile products around the world,” said Carlos Moore, the American Textile Manufacturers Institute’s executive vice president.
Laura Jones, executive director, U.S. Association of Importers of Textiles and Apparel, said she believes that because of Eizenstat’s “extensive experience in Europe and the international arena, he has and will take a more global view of the world than the people who have done this job before.”
The undersecretary is responsible for helping to shape and implement U.S. international trade policy. Among other Commerce agencies within this portfolio is the Office of Textiles and Apparel, which is largely responsible for controlling clothing, fabric and fiber imports, as well as seeking export opportunities for these products.
A 1967 Harvard Law School graduate, Eizenstat was a Johnson administration staff member and was President Carter’s domestic policy adviser from 1977 to 1981. As a partner in the Washington law firm of Powell, Goldstein, Frazer & Murphy from 1981 to 1993, Eizenstat worked on international trade matters and often has been quoted in the media and has written numerous articles on trade issues.
Eizenstat has consistently urged a relaxation of world trade barriers as long as there are reciprocal market openings.
There is no date for Senate action on Eizenstat’s nomination, which could become moot if Congress ultimately prevails over the White House and eliminates the agency altogether.