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International Developments and the U.S. Apparel Industry

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This article summarizes the impact on the U.S. apparel industry of international trade flows from 1972 to 1976 and discusses several of the underlying reasons behind the continued decline in its international competitiveness. The article also describes the even larger competitive toll on the major European countries' apparel industries during the period and what polices their governments followed. The basic conclusion of the study this article summarizes is that without major changes in policy and strategy at both government and industry levels, the international competitive position of the U.S. apparel industry will continue to deteriorate.

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*Jeffrey S. Arpan is Professor of International Business and Director of the Center for Industry Policy and Strategy at the College of Business Administration, University of South Carolina. He is the co-author of two research monographs on the American apparel industry and has also been involved in several major studies of the textile and synthetic fiber industries in the U.S. and other countries.

**José de la Torre is Professor of International Business at INSEAD (Fontainebleau, France). He has co-authored two research monographs on the American apparel industry, and several articles and papers on structural adjustments in the apparel industry in Europe. He recently completed a visiting assignment as a senior policy analyst with the U.S. Department of Commerce's Economic Policy Staff (Office of Economic Affairs).

***Brian Toyne is Associate Professor of International Business and Director of the Center for International Business Studies at the College of Business Administration, University of South Carolina. In addition to his collaborative work on the U.S. apparel industry, he has conducted a major research project on American industries' use of Item 807 of the U.S. Tariff Code (offshore processing of U.S. sourced components).

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Arpan, J., De La Torre, J. & Toyne, B. International Developments and the U.S. Apparel Industry. J Int Bus Stud 12, 49–64 (1981). https://doi.org/10.1057/palgrave.jibs.8490587

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  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1057/palgrave.jibs.8490587

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