Clothes from China piling up on European borders

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Wednesday, August 24, 2005

Clothes worth millions of euros are being blocked in European warehouses after the European Union imposed quotas on ten types of textiles from China.

The European Commission agreed to the quotas with China in July and many of them, including jumpers (sweaters) and trousers were quickly exceeded.

Retailers across Europe are now claiming they face massive losses. The European consumer's organisation, BEUC, has said that most of the clothes were ordered before the agreement was made and that their blockage is "ignoring the basic laws of economics".

A representative warned: "The new quotas will lead to higher prices and less choice for European consumers when they try to buy trousers, pullovers, women's blouses, brassieres and other textile products in the coming months."

The Commission is sending a representative to China to try and find a solution to the crisis, but according to the news website Euractive, the quotas are unlikely to be dropped as most EU member countries are in favour of them.