Wednesday, October 04, 2006

E.U. imposes customs duties on Chinese/Vietnamese leather shoe imports

Made in China? Not anymore! The European Union imposed customs duties on some Chinese and Vietnamese leather-shoe imports, trying to protect shoemakers in southern Europe and whittle down a record trade deficit with China.

A proposal to slap two-year tariffs of 16.5 percent on imports from China and 10 percent on shipments from Vietnam, was approved by EU representatives. The bloc accuses China and Vietnam of selling footwear in Europe at unfairly low prices, an allegation both countries deny.

I don't think this will save any jobs in Europe. Plus, what ever happened to free trade?

China supplied half of the 2.5 billion pairs of shoes sold in Europe last year. China's sales of 86.9 billion euros in that period made it the No. 2 exporter to Europe, just under the U.S.'s 89.8 million euros.

EU imports of Chinese leather shoes climbed more than fourfold between 2001 2005. Vietnam's shipments almost doubled over the same period.

Four-fifths of the bloc's leather shoes come from Italy, Portugal and Spain, some of those shoemakers employ fewer than 10 people.

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