NEW YORK — With 95 days remaining until the expiration of the quota system, executives in the $320 billion global apparel and textile business are faced with critical decisions. China’s industry looks poised to dominate the world trade in garments, though the risk of safeguard actions has many importers hedging their bets. At the same time, India’s apparel industry is shifting its focus to high-end goods, looking to avoid head-to-head competition with its Asian neighbor. Latin American manufacturers are largely pinning their hopes on pending free-trade deals with the U.S. and African executives fear their continent’s nascent industry will disappear.

This story first appeared in the September 28, 2004 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.