The House Select Committee on the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) in the United States is currently scrutinising some of the world's largest brands regarding forced labour and origin of their cotton-based products. The committee has sent letters to major fashion and sportswear retailers, including Nike, Adidas, Shein, and Temu, to inquire about their compliance with the Uyghur Forced Labor Prevention Act, which was signed into law by President Biden in 2021.
The letters sent to the companies were made public by the Committee and contain 14 questions each, seeking information on banned goods in their clothing lines. The firms importing from China were also asked about the number of shipments sent under the "de minimis" trade provision, which allows for duty-free shipments of all goods priced under 800 dollars.
Forbes reports that the letters sent to the companies are part of the US government's efforts to combat forced labour in China's Xinjiang region, where Uyghur Muslims are allegedly being detained and forced to work in cotton fields. The Uyghur Forced Labor Prevention Act aims to ban imports of goods produced through forced labour in Xinjiang.
The fashion industry has faced increasing pressure from consumers and activists to ensure that their supply chains are free from forced labour. The scrutiny from the US government's House Select Committee on the CCP highlights the need for greater transparency and accountability in the industry's supply chains. The responses from the companies to the letters will be closely monitored by the committee, and the findings could have significant implications for the fashion industry's future practices.