The United States Department of Commerce imposed safeguard quotas on two more categories of Chinese textiles yesterday, after a fourth round of Sino-US trade talks ended without agreement. The department imposed quotas on brassieres and synthetic filament fabric yesterday but delayed its decision on quotas for sweaters, dressing gowns, woollen trousers and knit fabric until October 1, it said in a statement. 'This demonstrates the administration's commitment to levelling the playing field for US industries,' the department's deputy assistant secretary James Leonard said. The US negotiators left Beijing yesterday afternoon for Washington without reaching an agreement with the central government. US Trade Representative special textile negotiator David Spooner said: 'We will be consulting with the Chinese over the next few days on the date and location of the next round of negotiations.' Hong Kong Textile Council vice-chairman Willy Lin Sun-mo said: 'It looks like [a] carrot-and-stick [approach]. The US gave China a big stick; if China doesn't agree, the US will hit China with more quotas. But the US also made a goodwill gesture by delaying other quotas.' He added: 'The US government has to bow to political pressure from its industry, but is also seeking free trade with China. The delay of four quotas will give a good feeling when President Hu Jintao visits the US next week.' Pressure from US industry has been mounting on Washington to take a tough stance against China. Cass Johnson, president of the National Council of Textile Organisations, said US industry would petition Washington to impose more safeguard quotas. The quotas on brassieres and synthetic filament fabric will last until the end of this year. The US is entitled to impose safeguard quotas on Chinese textile products deemed to disrupt domestic markets, under a WTO clause. Top Form International, a Hong Kong-listed brassiere manufacturer, would shift production from China to Thailand and the Philippines because of the new quotas, chief financial officer Michael Austin said.