In 1974, the Multifibre Arrangement was established by the World Trade Organisation (WTO) to allow more developed countries (MDCs), mainly the US and European countries, to adjust to the competition arising from cheaper textile manufacturing in the least developed countries (LDCs). Although this was the main aim, the MFA also provided the opportunity for LDCs to set up economies in textile manufacturing, in turn creating jobs and income from exports, and therefore helping to alleviate poverty. After the MFA came to an end, the MFA Forum was established to deal with the associated challenges, but also take advantage of the opportunities created. Now, this too is coming to a close. To accompany our exclusive preview of ‘Looking to the future: Textile manufacture trading post-MFA Forum’, the Source looks at the background to the Multifibre Agreement and MFA Forum.
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