Multi-Fibre Arrangement

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Multi-Fibre Arrangement

An expired international agreement that set quotas on the textiles and clothing developing countries could export to developed countries. The purpose behind the Multi-Fibre Arrangement was to allow developed countries time to adjust to competition from developing countries, which could produce the same textile products much more cheaply. It was thought that developing countries could flood the markets in developed countries with less expensive textiles, which would have had a negative effect on the developed countries' economies. Critics of the Arrangement argued this hampered development. It was in effect from 1974 through the end of 2004. It is formally called the Agreement on Textile and Clothing. See also: World Trade Organization.

Multi-Fibre Arrangement (MFA)

a trade pact between some 80 developed and DEVELOPING COUNTRIES, introduced in 1974, that regulates INTERNATIONAL TRADE in textiles and clothing through the use of QUOTAS on imports. Its purpose is to give poor countries guaranteed and growing access to markets in Europe and North America but at the same time to ensure this growth does not disrupt the older established textile clothing industries of the developed countries.

The MFA is a form of PROTECTIONISM that discriminates against the interests of the less developed countries, many of which are highly dependent on the textile industries as a leading sector in promoting their ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT; it is contrary to the principles of the WORLD TRADE ORGANIZATION but has been conveniently ‘exempted’ from that body's rules of good conduct. Under an agreement reached in the ‘Uruguay Round’ of negotiations, however, the MFA was phased out in 2005.

References in periodicals archive ?
Manufacturing jobs have moved overseas during the past two decades and this trend continues, especially now in the apparel sector with the elimination of the Multifiber Arrangement in January 2005.
Tracing developments within the apparel and textile industries since the end of World War II, Rosen assesses the effects of trade liberalization and details the political machinations behind the steady progression away from the relative protection of these sectors to the opening of markets with the ending of the Multifiber Arrangement under the Clinton administration in 1995.
Such a multifiber arrangement should also make it easier to pinpoint an impact's location, he adds.
In addition to the radical changes seen with the passage of North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), the likely extension of NAFTA to the Caribbean and the phase out of the Multifiber Arrangement, Truslow said that other areas of industry interest have experienced radical change as well.
William Cline of the Institute for International Economics estimates the combined costs to American consumers of textile tariffs and Multifiber Arrangement quotas (for all countries) at $20,300,000,000 on the wholesale level and as much as $40,000,000,000 at the retail level.
The Multifiber Arrangement, which has governed textile and apparel trade since the early '70s will be phased out over 10 years beginning in July 1995 or later.
Appeasement of foreign policy concerns and the ineffective use of existing mechanisms, including the Multifiber Arrangement, to curb damage from imports has caused this industry a great loss of jobs," he added.
government to tighten the Multifiber Arrangement, which governs textile and apparel trade, to curb the growth of imports.
Cates called on the United States to employ provisions of the Multifiber Arrangement which allow the introduction of import restraints where there has been market disruption: "The government trade statistics show that at least half of this year's increase is not under MFA quotas and should be put under controls without further delay.
This surge calls for changes in the textile proposal in the Uruguay Round of trade talks -- extending the phaseout of the Multifiber Arrangement (MFA) from 10 to at least 15 years and requiring other nations to open up their markets to our goods," Cates said.
We are asking our negotiators to extend to 15 years from 10 the proposed phaseout period of the Multifiber Arrangement, which regulates textile and apparel trade," Truslow said.