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Imports of clothing made in China rose 34% from last year, the Israel Manufacturers' Association said, noting that between January and March, 54 million items of clothing - worth around $80 million - were imported by Israel, a third higher than for the same period of 2005.
As a consequence of the growing trend to import clothes rather than manufacture them in Israel, the association said 600 of the 18,900 strong work force in the local textile/fashion industry were laid off over the last year. Figures also showed that overall textile imports were up 32.7% in the first three months of 2006 versus the same period of 2005, with the value of the imported fabrics and materials around $117.6m.
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