Canada’s Apparel and Textile Sector Gets a Boost from Chinese as U.S.-China Trade War Escalates
In the midst of the U.S.-China trade dispute, hundreds of Chinese companies will be making their way to Toronto later this month, ready to do business with Canadians.
They will be participating in Canada’s largest apparel and textile trade show, Apparel Textile Sourcing Canada (ATSC), August 20-22, at the Toronto International Centre.
Keynote speakers at the event are some of North America’s leading apparel and textile industry experts, ready to hone in on what the U.S.-China trade issues mean for Canadians and potential repercussions for the sector. Topping the roster of speakers are:
• Bob Kirke, Executive Director, Canadian Apparel Federation, who will provide a Canadian Trade Policy Update on strengthening relationships with global markets, including China, which represents more than 40 per cent of Canadian apparel imports. Kirke will also discuss negative consequences of a U.S.-China trade war as well as strategies for Canadian firms looking to adjust to the new realities of international trade (August 20, 12 p.m. – 1 p.m.).
• Julia K. Hughes, President, U.S. Fashion Industry Association (USFIA), who will speak about the United States Trade Policy Update and the Impact on NAFTA and TPP (August 20, 1 p.m. – 2 p.m.). Representing iconic global brands and retailers based in the United States, USFIA is fighting on the front lines of the trade war in Washington, D.C. to stop new tariffs on apparel and footwear from China.
• Jeff Streader, global industry veteran and private equity partner, will share insight into The Impact of Artificial Intelligence and Digital Disruption on the Global Supply Chain. Steader is the former Global COO of Billabong, Chief Supply Chain Officer of Guess, Vice President of VF Corporation and Operating Partner with Marlin Equity (August 20, 11 a.m. to 12 p.m.).
• Sun Jiwen, Minister Counsellor, Economic and Commercial Counsellor’s Office of the Embassy of the People’s Republic of China in Canada, who will head a panel on China’s Changing Role as a Front-runner in the Global Textile and Apparel Supply Chain (August 20, 10 a.m. – 11:00 a.m.).
“Canadians will learn all there is to know about succeeding in the country’s apparel and textile industry, and hear about China’s commitment to free trade with Canada and incentives for Canadian brands to work with China and other countries globally,” said Jason Prescott, CEO of JP Communications, ATSC producer and North America’s leading publisher of B2B wholesale trade platform TopTenWholsale.com and manufacturer sourcing platform Manufacturer.com.
Prescott announced that a first-of-its-kind showcase of top brands from China, called “Avenue ATS,” will be unveiled at the apparel and textile trade show. “These are all highly successful, leading apparel brands in China, looking for partners to help grow their fashions globally,” he said. “This is an unprecedented opportunity for Canadians to get first dibs on local market rights, with the support of experienced international industry players.”
ATSC features more than 500 international exhibits, three days of seminars and panels, an on-site business matchmaking service and a spectacular fashion show spotlighting established and up-and-coming Canadian designers. More than 5,000 visitors are expected to attend over the three-day event – now in its third year – including apparel and fashion executives, influencers, designers, retailers, importers, wholesalers, merchandisers, buyers and suppliers.
“This is a not-to-be missed event for anyone wanting to make global industry connections,” Prescott said. “Nowhere else in Canada can you find this kind of opportunity for international apparel networking and product displays under one roof, without having to travel overseas.”
New to this year’s event is the addition of the China Brand Show, coming to Canada for the first time as part of ATSC and adding categories such as accessories, giftware, home electronics, footwear, luggage and housewares and general merchandise.
ATSC is supported by many international governments and associations, headed by the China Chamber of Commerce for Import and Export of Textile and Apparel (CCCT) and the Bangladesh High Commission on behalf of the Export Promotion Bureau and the Bangladesh Garment and Manufacturers Export Association. The event is also supported by the Taiwan Textile Association, the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI), India’s Apparel Export Promotion Council (AEPC), Wool and Woollens Export Promotion Council (WWEPC) and TFO Canada, experts in trade for developing countries.