Obama administration outlines trade pact...
17 July 2009
Obama administration outlines trade pact enforcement
This article is extracted from the 17 July 2009 edition of “American Shipper”.
The Obama administration has vowed to ensure that U.S. trade agreement commitments are met by other countries to ensure that U.S. workers aren’t undercut.
“Americans have believed that our government hasn’t done enough to protect our trade rights,” said U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk in a speech at the U.S. Steel Mon Valley Works-Edgar Thomson Plant in Pittsburgh on Thursday. “And, while our trading partners largely respect our agreements, sometimes those rules are violated.
That’s why enforcement cannot be an afterthought. It needs to be a centerpiece of trade policy.”
President Obama has recently authorized the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative to strengthen its trade enforcement efforts. …
“Our new approach to enforcement is simple,” Kirk said. “We will deploy our resources more effectively to identify and solve problems at the source. But make no mistake: we will pursue legal remedies when other options are closed.”…
[Kirk] added: “One of the best ways we guarantee America’s trade rights is by consistently monitoring our partners’ trade practices. If they know we are holding a magnifying glass up to their actions, they’ll be less likely to break the rules. So, we will use that magnifying glass on behalf of more American businesses.”
Kirk highlighted several key measures that the U.S. government will use to better enforce existing trade agreements:
• Measures to spot and address trade barriers particularly affecting American agricultural producers and manufacturers, such as sanitary and phytosanitary requirements restricting U.S. agricultural exports and technical barriers impeding American producers’ ability to trade globally.
• Increased coordination with State, Labor, Commerce and Agriculture departments and other federal agencies to identify and respond to trade barriers.