Quotas that had long restrained Chinese and other large-scale producers from dominating U.S. and EU markets ended on January 1, 2005. Quotas helped many developing countries move from commodity exports into manufacturing, but also made them dependent on textile and apparel for export earnings. Since quotas have ended their exports have been declining and factories are shedding workers as the full force of competition—especially with China—is felt. Prices are falling dramatically and buyers are placing fewer long-term orders. The uncertainty pervading the industry is having a particularly cruel impact on workers in small- and medium-sized enterprises.
In this short paper we