12/06/2021 | Press release | Distributed by Public on 12/06/2021 19:09
December 6, 2021 | WASHINGTON, D.C.
The American Apparel & Footwear Association welcomed the introduction of legislation to extend the Haitian Hemisphere Opportunity through Partnership Encouragement (HOPE) Act and the Haitian Economic Lift Program (HELP) Act until 2035. Companion bills have been introduced in both the Senate and the House of Representatives to extend these programs that aim to improve opportunities for the Haitian people through trade preferences designed to support manufacturing jobs in the apparel industry.
"Haiti is an important partner to the industry, both as a source of finished apparel and a market for American-made components," said Steve Lamar, president and CEO of the American Apparel & Footwear Association. "Haiti has experienced many hardships in recent years, from natural disasters to political unrest. Renewing these programs encourages companies to continue to work in Haiti and grow the industry there. While a stronger industry is beneficial for the Haitian people, it also supports thousands of American jobs that rely on Haiti as a market for U.S.-made textiles. Thank you to Senators Rubio and Cassidy, and Representatives Salazar and Wilson for introducing this important legislation."
Haiti is currently the 13th largest source of apparel to the U.S. market, representing 1.36% of imports by volume. Key to the country's growth as a sourcing partner has been the 1983 Caribbean Basin Economic Recovery Act, and the amendments that were made to it via the Caribbean Basin Trade Partnership Act (CBTPA), the Haitian Hemispheric Opportunity through Partnership Encouragement (HOPE) Act, and the Haiti Economic Lift Program (HELP) Act.