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U.S. House of Representatives Approves Trade Preferences Bill

Published on June 17, 2015

The U.S. House of Representatives passed the non-controversial Trade Preferences Extension Act of 2015 Thursday, and the legislation, once adopted, is expected to immediately reduce costs for U.S. apparel and footwear businesses and consumers.

In a 397-32 vote, the House approved the trade preferences bill, which includes a 10-year renewal of the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA), retroactive renewal and an update to the Generalized System of Preferences (GSP) program and an extension of the Haiti HELP/HOPE program.

The Senate passed a nearly identical bill last month, but because the House-approved bill included additional amendments, the Senate will re-review the bill, and its final Congressional approval is expected this month.

“Critical among this package is the renewal and update of the Generalized System of Preferences program,” American Apparel and Footwear Association president and CEO Juanita D. Duggan said of the program that expired in 2013. “Renewal of the program will end the $2 million a day companies are losing with the lapse in the program. With the update of GSP, we can now begin a process to get travel goods – such as backpacks, luggage, and phone cases – qualified for GSP benefits.” Read more. Source| Sourcing Journal