18 November 2010 - US apparel imports from Central America are this year strongly rebounding, after experiencing a continuous decline in the past four years. Rising costs in China are resulting in a shift to Honduras, El Salvador, Nicaragua, Guatemala and even the Dominican Republic. So-called CAFTA-DR countries are now taking advantage of low labor costs, proximity and duty-free access to the US market.
4 June 2007 - US apparel imports from Central America and the Dominican Republic further fell in the first quarter 2007. Slow implementation of the duty-free agreement with the United States in 2006 continues affecting the level in shipments from the region. The surge in US cotton trouser imports from China is also depressing sales of Central American exporters. Knit shirt suppliers are more resisting.
22 March 2007 - US apparel imports last year declined from countries that signed the CAFTA-DR, mainly due to slow implementation of the duty-free agreement between five Central American countries (plus the Dominican Republic) and the United States. Exports to the US market may stop decreasing in 2007, however, thanks to relaxed rules of origin for the duty-free access on the US market and also due to US quotas that limit imports from China in most sensitive categories.
6 March 2007 - After very long delays, implementation of the CAFTA-DR agreement for the Dominican Republic is effective from 1 March, offering relaxed rules of origin to domestic apparel exporters. Dominican denim trouser producers are still waiting for a cumulation of origin, however, that will allow them using Mexican denim fabrics and keep duty-free access to the US market. Additional trade concessions from the United States are also long in concretizing.
27 November 2006 - The United States and Mexico are expected this week signing a decisive cumulation agreement that will allow apparel producers in Central America and the Dominican Republic (D.R.) using Mexican fabrics including denim, without losing their duty-free access to the US market. This is a decisive but complex chapter of textile trade negotiations.