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Clothing (Imports)

Volume 889: debated on Wednesday 26 March 1975

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asked the Secretary of State for Trade (1) what restraints, or arrangements to negotiate restraints, on imports of gloves have been agreed with the other members of the EEC; which exporting countries are involved in such arrangements: and if the restraints are on a Community or regional basis; if the latter, which countries are involved; and when such arrangements will take effect;(2) what restraints, or arrangements to negotiate restraints, on imports of outerwear have been agreed with the other members of the EEC; which exporting countries are involved in such arrangements; if the restraints are on a Community or regional basis; if the latter, which countries are involved; and when such arrangements will take effect:(3) what restraints, or arrangements to negotiate restraints, on imports of women's and children's underwear have been agreed with the other members of the EEC; which exporting countries are involved in such arrangements: if the restraints are on a Community or regional basis; if the latter, which countries are involved; and when such arrangements will take effect:(4) what restraints, or arrangements to negotiate restraints, on imports of men's underwear have been agreed with the other members of the EEC; which exporting countries are involved in such arrangements; if the restraints are on a Community or regional basis; if the latter, which countries are involved; and when such arrangements will take effect;(5) what restraints, or arrangements to negotiate restraints, on imports of tights and socks have been agreed with the other members of the EEC; which exporting countries are involved in such arrangements; if the restraints are on a Community or regional basis; if the latter, which countries are involved; and when such arrangements will take effect;(6) what restraints, or arrangements to negotiate restraints, on imports of socks and half hose have been agreed with other members of the EEC; which exporting countries are involved in such arrangements; if the restraints are on a Community or regional basis; if the latter, which countries are involved; and when such arrangements will take effect;(7) what restraints, or arrangements to negotiate restraints, on imports of knitwear have been agreed with the other members of the EEC; which exporting countries are involved in such arrangements; if the restraints are on a Community or regional basis; if the latter, which countries are involved; and when such arrangements will take effect;(8) if he will give full details of the burden-sharing arrangements agreed with the other members of the EEC in respect of knitted goods, including knitwear, outerwear, underwear and socks; what rate of growth of imports into the Community is agreed for each category; and what the rate of growth will be in each category as far as the United Kingdom is concerned.

Agreement has been reached in Brussels on mandates for negotiating bilateral agreements under the GATT Multifibre Arrangement between the EEC and several major textile supplying countries, such as India, Pakistan, Hong Kong and South Korea. Work is also well advanced on mandates relating to Brazil, Japan, Macao, Malaysia, Singapore, Colombia, Mexico and Yugoslavia as well as arrangements for imports from Taiwan. These will all be implemented as soon as possible. Details of the coverage and quota levels cannot yet be given and must await conclusion of the negotiations with the supplying countries. Premature disclosure might be prejudicial to the interests of our textile producers.