AAFA, NRF, RILA, USFIA hail WRO on XUAR cotton products

The American Apparel & Footwear Association, the National Retail Federation, the Retail Industry Leaders Association and the United States Fashion Industry Association have praised welcomed the recent blanket government withhold release order (WRO) affecting all cotton and cotton products from the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region (XUAR).

“The companies we represent remain outraged by the reports of forced labor in the XUAR—and reports that Uyghurs are being trafficked to other regions—and have long made eradicating forced labour in our supply chains a top operational and public policy priority,” the trade bodies said in a joint statement.

“The industry is pioneering and implementing new technologies and innovative approaches to decipher where supply chains are susceptible to forced labor, particularly as it relates to XUAR. We look forward to working with the US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) to make sure enforcement is smart, transparent, targeted, and effective. We urge CBP to share with industry the evidence gathered, and the evidentiary thresholds used, that led to today’s announcement,” the statement said.

“Additionally, we ask CBP to share enforcement actions so that industry can further inform their due diligence and amplify and expand CBP’s enforcement efforts,” it added.

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