On December 1, 2016, U.S. Customs and Border Protection posted the Textiles and Wearing Apparel Priority Trade Issue Brochure.
As one of the largest manufacturing employers in the United States, the textile sector is a key component of the U.S. economy. CBP’s enforcement of textile tariff and trade law is critical to protecting revenue and ensuring a fair market for the domestic textile industry, which employs approximately 600,000 domestic workers.
The textile industry (FY 2016):
- Represents more than $121.5 billion in annual imports,
- Consists of about 74,600 importers, and
- Generates approximately 42 percent of all duties collected by CBP.
Textiles have high duty rates, averaging 16 percent, compared to all other imports, which have an average duty rate of 2 percent. CBP collected $13.7 billion in textilerelated duties in FY 2016.
The United States is also one of the largest consumers of textiles in the world. Approximately 21 percent of all U.S. importers import textiles and apparel.
A main focus of CBP textile enforcement is to manage the enforcement of trade agreements and legislated preference programs, which allow eligible textile goods to enter the United States at preferential duty rates.
- 16.9 percent of all textiles and apparel are imported under a relevant trade agreement or preference program,
- Over $20.5 billion of imported textile merchandise claims preferential tariff treatment, and
- Participating importers save $3.2 billion in duties and tariffs.
Preference programs provide reduced or eliminated duties, but there is a strong incentive to falsify claims under these programs on shipments of textiles imported into the United States.