The Multi-Fibre Arrangement: The Fifth Piece of Paper

Lawrence W. R. Mills

in Protecting Free Trade

Published by Hong Kong University Press

Published in print March 2012 | ISBN: 9789888083985
Published online September 2012 | e-ISBN: 9789882209084 | DOI:
The Multi-Fibre Arrangement: The Fifth Piece of Paper

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This chapter examines Hong Kong’s participation in the Multi-Fibre Arrangement, a system under the auspices of the GATT originating in the early 1970s. Originally intended to be merely temporary, the arrangement lasted for 30 years and sought to bring existing international trade agreements relating to textiles and garments under a single umbrella and to provide limited scope for liberalisation. The chapter argues that this arrangement created the intriguing paradox, captured in the title of the book, of enabling Hong Kong to emerge as the world’s largest exporter of garments, prospering while upholding its free trade principles through the acceptance of increasing restrictions on it most important industry.

Keywords: Hong Kong; Free trade; Multi-Fibre Arrangement; Protectionism; Textiles; Garments; Exports; Trade negotiations; Quotas

Chapter.  5370 words. 

Subjects: Business and Management

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