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Priority Trade Issue: Textiles


The textile sector is a multibillion-dollar global industry, and the United States is the second largest exporter of textiles globally. The U.S. domestic textile industry employs more than 500,000 workers, and is crucial in automotive, military/law enforcement, agriculture, and medical applications. Textiles remains designated as a Priority Trade Issue (PTI) with CBP.  The goal of the Textiles PTI is to ensure that textile imports fully comply with applicable laws, regulations, quotas, free trade agreements and other preference programs. CBP’s efforts in the textile industry focus on high-risk areas that can cause significant revenue loss, harm the U.S. economy, or threaten the health and safety of the American people. CBP promotes legitimate trade in the industry while also encouraging a strong domestic manufacturing base. 

The combination of high duty rates, and complex laws and regulations make textile imports susceptible to trade fraud. CBP maintains a robust and comprehensive enforcement strategy to stay one-step ahead of textile trade violators. Below is a summary of several program efforts:

  • Capacity Building - CBP’s textile enforcement strategy prioritizes collaborative work with the domestic producers and importing industries, along with our partners at Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI). CBP conducts capacity-building exercises, such as internal and external outreach efforts, to build knowledge on how to identify trade fraud. CBP’s personnel - including international trade analysts, import specialists, attorneys, and auditors - act as force multipliers in their interaction with the trade community and CBP’s Partner Government Agencies to obtain, improve, and retain knowledge, tools, and other resources needed to remain abreast of new and developing textile-related issues.
  • Trade Intelligence - CBP’s Trade Intelligence initiative utilizes key industry contacts to identify unfair trading practices or illegal trading activity. By leveraging key trade intelligence from various sources, CBP is able to develop action plans and operations to detect and address noncompliant importers and import transactions.  CBP is committed to collaboration with key industry stakeholders on strategies to enforce textile trade laws and regulations.  This not only includes the domestic producers, but also the textile importing community
  • International Verifications and Enforcement Operations - CBP works with its foreign government counterparts to address textile related non-compliance and fraud. This includes working with ICE/HSI to form Textile Production Verification Teams (TPVTs) to conduct factory visits abroad to verify origin and compliance with trade preference programs claimed on imports of textiles and apparel. CBP has also executed several textile operations in concert with HSI and CBP’s field operations.

Textile and Trade Agreements

Most free trade agreements and legislated trade preference programs have complex rules of origins requirements and other originating & qualifying provisions related to the textiles and wearing apparel. CBP is responsible for ensuring that the trade community complies with all statutory, regulatory, policy, and procedural requirements that pertain to importations under free trade agreements and other trade preference programs.

About Textiles
Textile Statistics




Related Links

Priority Trade Issue: Trade Agreements - Information related to the various Trade Agreements and other Preference Programs, including implementation instructions and Certification of Origin Templates.

To view trade policy and enforcement updates, visit Cargo Systems Messaging Service (CSMS).

Check out the Customs Ruling Online Search System (CROSS) to view the database of published rulings and the requirements for Electronic Ruling Requests page to learn more about the procedures under the rulings program.

Report a Trade Violation - e-Allegations provides a means for the public to report to CBP any suspected violations of trade laws or regulations related to the importation of goods into the U.S. 

Quota Enforcement and AdministrationQuota Bulletins and Commodity Graph Reports and Tariff Preference Levels.

To view the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS) – visit the United States International Trade Commission (USITC).

Department of Commerce, Office of Textiles and Apparel (OTEXA) – Additional information related to textile and apparel imports

Last Modified: Mar 21, 2024