For many years the United States has extended the Generalized System of Preferences (GSP) program to many poor and developing nations. This program allows for certain goods to be brought into the U.S.duty-free. This has allowed many countries, including Brazil, India, Indonesia, Cambodia, Bangladesh and others, the opportunity to ship their products tax free to the world’s largest consuming market.
Since the program started, footwear has been excluded from GSP coverage even though many of GSP’s beneficiaries produce footwear. In 2013, FDRA began seeking to include footwear, in a limited capacity, on the list of products that receive GSP treatment – providing the industry with millions in savings each year.
“GSP allows duty free imports from developing countries and FDRA has lead the charge to have footwear added for several years. This important change would help some companies seeking to diversify their sourcing from traditional locations. FDRA does not see this as a main priority because countries in the GSP program do not have the current capacity to produce large amounts of footwear for the American marketplace. However, we want to make a point to Congress that we will use any tool in our legislative arsenal to lower footwear no matter where our footwear is made.” – FDRA President Matt Priest