Multi-Fibre Arrangement

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.
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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.

Collins Dictionary of Economics, 4th ed. © C. Pass, B. Lowes, L. Davies 2005
References in periodicals archive ?
Sewing success?; employment, wages, and poverty following the end of the multi-fibre arrangement.
The textile industry collapsed in some countries after the expiration in late 2005 of WTO's Multi-Fibre Arrangement, which largely put an end to quota advantages for African countries.
Then in January 2005, the Multi-Fibre Arrangement, which governed the world's textile trade expired and negatively affected Lesotho's status under the African Growth and Opportunity Act causing a catastrophic shakeout of the textile industry in the country.
The Lucas report warns that scrapping the Multi-Fibre Arrangement in January - a move which prompted a surge in Chinese textile imports - had already costs hundreds of thousands of jobs in poor countries, and led to draconian government measures.
MFA (Multi-Fibre Arrangement), this was stated by a renowned textile tycoon and US based ASAP Global Sourcing Show Chief, Frank S.
A key case is negotiations on the lifting of textile quotas when the global multi-fibre arrangement expires in 2004.
Textile quotas under the Multi-Fibre Arrangement cost poor countries |pounds~35bn ($52.5bn) a year in lost earnings, and the average British household has to pay |pounds~44 more in clothes bills because of it, according to the WDM.
In the area of external relations, the discussions by the Economic Ministers on their attitude to such issues as the Multi-Fibre Arrangement, ASEAN priorities in the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT), and the Far Eastern Freight Conference (FECE), are all useful leads to a perspective on the concerns in the region and provide important leads to a study of the group.
She covers global buyers, the phase-out of the Multi-Fibre Arrangement, and the global economic crisis; clothing exports in low-income countries in Sub-Saharan Africa from footloose to regional integration; Cambodia's clothing exports from assembly to full-package supplier; Bangladesh's clothing exports from lowest cost to broader capabilities; and how to compete in the post-quota and post crisis world.
Until now, a quota system has provided some protection for EU textile manufacturers, but from January next year import quotas have to be abolished with the demise of the 1974 Multi-Fibre Arrangement. In the past, EU textiles producers, dominated by Portugal, have attempted to staunch the flow of cheap imports by setting up barriers in the form of quotas and duties.
Its central feature is the phasing out of a set of bilateral quotas called the Multi-Fibre Arrangement (MFA).
The issue is due to become more pressing by the end of the year when WTO nations are set to drop their quotas on textiles and apparel as the 1974 Multi-Fibre Arrangement (MFA) is dismantled.

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