The RCEP tariff may increase textile exports from the Philippines to China

On June 2, 2023, China will impose the tariff rates it agreed to under the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) agreement on certain imports from the Philippines. This action may raise China’s purchases of numerous Philippine items, notably textiles. Currently, China dominates as the Philippines’ primary trading partner for textile products.

According to trade statistics, China is a net exporter of textile items such as garments, textiles, yarn, and fiber. In bilateral commerce with the Philippines, China exports clothes and other textile items in more significant numbers and values than imports.

China shipped clothes worth $578.881 million to the Philippines in the first quarter of this year, down from $625.933 million in the same period last year. The transaction was valued at $792.634 million in the fourth quarter of 2022 and reached a high of $797.563 million in the second quarter of the same year before remaining relatively consistent in the following quarters. However, commerce has declined significantly in the first quarter of the current year. According to Fibre2Fashion’s market analysis tool TexPro, yearly shipping was $2.981 billion in 2022, $2.767 billion in 2021, $2.814 billion in 2020, $3.019 billion in 2019, and $2.728 billion in 2018.

China is a significant clothing provider to the Philippines, while the country imports some clothing. In 2022, imports from the Philippines were worth $75.624 million, $74.833 million in 2021, $49.301 million in 2020, $63.638 million in 2019, and $65.354 million in 2018. According to TexPro, apparel imports from the Philippines were valued at $13.784 million in the first quarter of 2023.

In the same way, China sells more fabric, yarn, and fiber to the Philippines than it imports. The advantageous tariff rates agreed upon in the RCEP, on the other hand, may help the Philippines by increasing textile exports to China.

The synthetic fiber sector is altering its practices to suit this demand as brands and yarn makers pursue sustainable alternatives. In an interview with Fibre2Fashion, Mauro Dallavalle, senior marketing manager, fibers global at US-based business Avient, explored these trends and Avient’s involvement in the transformation.

“Sustainable solutions that can help brand owners and yarn producers reduce their carbon footprint are in high demand.” “One of the main trend drivers in the specialised materials industry is finding solutions to meet this growing need,” Dallavalle told F2F. He emphasized that one notable option is to use more recycled materials in textiles, lowering reliance on fossil-based resources and the industry’s carbon impact.


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