This week, Imports Work, an organization comprised of dozens of US organizations and corporations, is marking “Imports Work for America Week,” highlighting how imports – not just exports – are key drivers of the US economy and job growth. The event is celebrated as part of the United States’ designation of May as International Trade Month.
One of the organizations participating in this week’s events, the American Apparel & Footwear Association (AAFA), documents specifically how imports foster and sustain job growth in just the apparel and footwear industries alone:
- 98 percent of clothing and 99 percent of shoes sold in the US are produced overseas
- These imports directly supply nearly 4 million US jobs, such as industry executives, mill workers, sourcing managers, retail associates, and many more
- These imports also account for hundreds of thousands of US jobs in related fields, such transportation and dry cleaning
- The median salary of the entire industry supply chain is $70,000
- Factory, transportation jobs are well-paying, many in the $20-$25 per hour range
The AAFA blog post is available here.