- EU Trade Commissioner Peter Mandelson and Chinese Commerce Minister Bo Xilai. (Photo: www.english.gov.cn)
In 2005 the EU introduced new quotas on textile imports to protect southern European textile industries from Chinese competition. This caused Chinese textile firms to accelerate shipments to the EU, and quickly fill up the quota for the year 2005. The remaining Chinese clothes were then held in the European Ports, not allowed to enter. The crisis was resolved as EU and China entered into an agreement, allowing the clothes to enter the EU immediately, but counting as part of the 2006 quota. This dispute was referred to in the press at the time as the "bra wars".