MEDIA WATCH: Bush's quotas raise trade-war concerns

Quotas placed on Chinese textile imports on November 18 prompted the media to question President Bush's commitment to free trade. Most stories expressed fears that a trade war would hurt the global economy, while doing little to stem US job losses to Southeast Asia and Latin America. While textile companies celebrated the decision as a win for US workers, retailers predicted higher prices for American consumers.

Quotas placed on Chinese textile imports on November 18 prompted the media to question President Bush's commitment to free trade. Most stories expressed fears that a trade war would hurt the global economy, while doing little to stem US job losses to Southeast Asia and Latin America. While textile companies celebrated the decision as a win for US workers, retailers predicted higher prices for American consumers.

Most frequent messages

1. Quotas may result in retaliatory measures from China, WTO

2. US protectionism will hurt global trade

3. Quotas will not ultimately save jobs in the US textile industry

4. China's labor and currency practices unfairly flood US markets

5. Quotas will increase prices for US consumers

Based on 54 US newspaper and television stories appearing November 17-24, 2003. Evaluation and analysis by CARMA International

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