Effect on Cambodia’s Garment Industry Uncertain as Suspension of EU Trade Scheme Looms

Workers and factory owners in Cambodia remain uncertain about how the suspension of trade preferences with the European Union will affect the country’s key garment industry, representatives said Tuesday, weeks after the bloc announced an end to tariff-free access to its market.

The EU in mid-February announced plans to suspend tariff-free access to its market under the “Everything But Arms” (EBA) scheme for around one-fifth of Cambodia’s exports, citing rollbacks on democracy and human rights—a decision that would reinstate tariffs on garments and footwear beginning Aug. 12, unless it is overturned by the bloc’s governments or its parliament.

The decision will result in a loss of around U.S. $1.1 billion of the country’s annual U.S. $5.8 billion in exports to the bloc, some 75 percent of which are made up of clothing and textiles—a crucial industry in Cambodia that employs one million people.

In full: https://www.rfa.org/english/news/cambodia/effect-02252020163340.html

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