IMRA URGES USTR TO END FOOTWEAR, APPAREL TARIFFS
The International Mass Retail Association on Thursday urged the U.S. Trade Representative to focus on reducing tariffs on a range of consumer products that the IMRA said could benefit U.S. consumers and provide economic opportunities for poor nations.
IMRA submitted specific recommendations for the current Doha Round of Multilateral Trade Negotiations and the agenda for the World Trade Organization.
“The reduction of tariffs on footwear and clothing is the highest priority of IMRA in the Doha Round,” said IMRA president Robert Verdisco in'written comments to USTR’s Trade Policy Committee.
Verdisco said tariff reductions would facilitate trade between the United States and countries in less-developed regions that produce goods, such as Latin America and Sub-Saharan Africa.
IMRA urged the U.S. government to negotiate true market access for a range of services essential to global supply chains. “No economy can be truly modern if it imposes barriers that slow the movement of goods between and among manufacturers, wholesalers, retailers and the consuming public,” IMRA said.
In IMRA’s comments submitted to the U.S.T.R., it provided nine recommendations for the WTO agenda, including: The WTO agenda could:
* Obtain improvements in retailing direct investment.
* Support efforts to improve trade facilitation, specifically in the customs area.
* Seek a system for harmonizing worldwide trademark registrations.
The Doha Multilateral Trade Negotiations were launched at the close of the November 2001 WTO Ministerial in Doha, Qatar.