LETTER: U.S. textile industryneeds strong voice in Washington


To the editor,

On behalf of the National Council of Textile Organizations, I am writing to express my support of the vote taken by Senators Richard Burr and Thom Tillis and Representatives Richard Hudson, Patrick McHenry, Renee Ellmers, Virginia Foxx, George Holding, Robert Pittenger, David Rouzer, and Mark Walker in favor of Trade Promotion Authority.

NCTO is a national trade association that represents the entire spectrum of the domestic textile manufacturing sector, from fiber and yarn to fully finished fabrics for numerous end uses. We promote a united front that communicates the industry’s needs and interests to lawmakers in Congress and the White House. NCTO fights to ensure that the U.S. textile industry has a strong voice in Washington on issues vital to our industry and workers, including international trade agreements.

NCTO represents 48 companies who have textile facilities in North Carolina, where statewide textile and apparel employment was 42,300 in 2014. North Carolina’s textile industry makes significant contributions to the national economy and job creation that is enriched when these companies can compete on a level playing field in the global market.

We realize there has been a lot of debate and discussion surrounding the Trade Promotion Authority. The U.S. textile industry has asked that Congress support TPA because it is critical that trade agreements fully incorporate the interests of American textile workers and the middle class. TPA establishes congressional negotiating objectives and consultation mechanisms involving international trade agreements currently being negotiated by the U.S. government.

The North Carolina delegation’s support of TPA will help ensure that these companies and the U.S. textile industry have leverage with the White House as it negotiates international trade agreements. The support of our friends on Capitol Hill helps us to secure critical provisions, such as those giving preference to yarns and fabrics made in the United States, under the terms of trade agreements currently being negotiated by the United States government.

It is essential that the U.S. textile industry have direct and meaningful input into trade negotiations, and support from North Carolina’s congressional delegation enhances our ability to reach a strong outcome for U.S. textile manufacturers. We look forward to working with the full North Carolina delegation on future legislation that supports U.S. textile production, investment, and jobs.

Augustine Tantillo, president & CEO, National Council of Textile Organizations

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