Statement by the President on the Trans-Pacific Partnership›By The White House // Monday, October 5, 2015
THE WHITE HOUSE- Office of the Press Secretary
October 5, 2015
I’ve spent every day of my presidency fighting to grow our economy and strengthen our middle class. That means making sure our workers have a fair shot to get ahead here at home, and a fair chance to compete around the world. My approach to trade has been guided by a unifying principle: leveling the playing field for American workers and businesses, so we can export more products stamped Made in America all over the world that support higher-paying American jobs here at home.MORE
US revises Cuba sanctions regulations to further normalize trade with Cuba›By Michael E. Zolandz // Monday, September 28, 2015
September 24, 2015
On September 18, 2015, the US Department of Treasury and US Department of Commerce released significant revisions to the US embargo on Cuba, as set out in the Cuban Assets Control Regulations (CACR) and the Export Administration Regulations (EAR). These changes will loosen a number of trade sanctions currently in effect. Among other things, the revised regulations permit US businesses to establish operations in Cuba in certain circumstances, relax controls on travel and remittances to Cuba, authorize commercial and financial transactions with Cuban nationals outside of Cuba, and expand opportunities for US firms to provide telecommunications services to Cuba. The changes took effect on September 21, 2015.MORE
Foraging for Service Industry Growth in China›By Linda Schmid // Friday, September 25, 2015
Foraging for Service Industry Growth in China
Linda Schmid,[i] September 14, 2015
China can rebalance export oriented growth with a more open and productive services economy. China’s 2001 accession to the World Trade Organization (WTO) included commitments to liberalize services. China also assumed important transparency obligations. After 14 years as a member of the WTO, China’s services economy remains significantly restricted. An opaque regulatory climate persists. State Owned Enterprises (SOEs) eclipse the services economy. A reduction of barriers to trade in services, a greater commitment to transparency, and a reboot of competition policy can help China build a diversified services economy.MORE
United States to Host Trans-Pacific Partnership Trade Ministers’ Meeting in Atlanta›By Diego Anez // Thursday, September 24, 2015
United States to Host Trans-Pacific Partnership Trade Ministers’ Meeting in Atlanta
Washington, D.C. – The United States will host a meeting of Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) Trade Ministers in Atlanta, GA from September 30th – October 1st preceded by a meeting of TPP Chief Negotiators from September 26th-29th. Trade Ministers and negotiators last met in July and have been making good progress toward resolving the limited number of outstanding issues.
NOTE: Working members of the media can register to participate in the open press events of the TPP Ministerial by RSVPing with USTR. All press registration must be received no later than 6:00pm on Monday, September 28.
For more information, please follow the link hereMORE
Outstanding Issues in TPP: Side-by-Side Discussion›By Bill Reinsch // Wednesday, August 12, 2015
Originally published by the National Foreign Trade Counsel:MORE
On August 7, the National Foreign Trade Counsel (NFTC) hosted a discussion on the progress and outcomes of the Transpacific Partnership (TPP) negotiations. Panelists also shared their predictions for the future of the TPP.
NFTC Chairman, Ambassador Alan Wolff, who was in Maui for the negotiations, provided commentary alongside U.S. Chamber of Commerce Senior Vice President for Asian Affairs Tami Overby, NFTC President Bill Reinsch and NFTC Vice President for Regional Trade Initiatives Chuck Dittrich.
CAFTA-DR Notches 10-Year Record of Success›By John Murphy // Thursday, August 6, 2015
By John Murphy and Zachary Busch
On August 2, 2005, implementing legislation for the Dominican Republic-Central America-U.S. Free Trade Agreement (CAFTA-DR) was signed into law after a tough fight in Congress. With a ten-year track record to survey, what can be said about the results of this seven-nation trade agreement?
In addition to the United States, CAFTA-DR’s members are Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, and the Dominican Republic. The agreement entered into force between El Salvador and the United States on March 1, 2006; Honduras and Nicaragua followed one month later, and Guatemala joined on July 1. The agreement entered into force with the Dominican Republic on March 1, 2007, and Costa Rica on January 1, 2009.
The fundamental objective of the agreement was to spur new trade flows, generate economic growth, and stimulate the creation of good jobs through the mutual elimination of tariffs and other trade barriers. To this end, according to the U.S. Department of Commerce, Central American and Dominican tariffs on U.S. consumer and industrial goods exports had been completely eliminated by 2015, and tariffs on nearly all U.S. agricultural products will be phased out by 2020.MORE
Policy Elites and Trade›By Robert Moran // Thursday, July 30, 2015
As soon as tomorrow, the Obama Administration may conclude the final round of negotiations for the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP). These negotiations are taking place at time when free trade has gotten more attention than at any time since the passage of NAFTA. To better understand this environment, on behalf of WITA, Brunswick Insight conducted a survey of Beltway “Policy Elites” to understand how the most informed Republicans and Democrats view free trade in general and the ongoing trade negotiations.
The survey showed that in general, Policy Elites have a low awareness of the trade debate: it has been overshadowed by Donald Trump’s presidential campaign and even recent events in Greece. Policy Elites in the Beltway are more supportive of free trade compared to the general population, but a majority of both Republicans and Democrats are not convinced that TPP will increase the number of jobs in the US. Despite the administration’s “Asia Pivot,” a slight majority of Policy Elites think an agreement with Europe is the most important deal for the US. Effective messaging will be critical for both TPP and the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) with the EU (possibly focusing on consumer benefits.)MORE
The Trans Pacific Partnership negotiations: time to go for the gold›By Bill Krist // Wednesday, July 29, 2015
By: William Krist
On Tuesday, July 28, trade ministers from 12 countries will begin a four- to seven-day meeting in Hawaii to try to wrap up negotiations on the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP). If successful, the TPP would create a free trade area between the U.S., Japan, Canada, Mexico, Australia, New Zealand, Brunei Darussalam, Singapore, Malaysia, Vietnam, Chile, and Peru. In addition to eliminating tariffs on trade among the 12 nations, the agreement will cover a host of issues including removing barriers to trade in services, opening up investment, and setting rules for a number of areas such as intellectual property protection and state-owned enterprises.
While the negotiations undoubtedly won’t be fully completed at this meeting, most observers expect substantial progress. After more than six years of negotiations, most issues have been resolved. Now there are only a few instances where trade ministers will have to make the final difficult decisions on trade-offs. Successfully concluding these negotiations is a top priority for President Obama, who sees this as an important part of his legacy.MORE
Boost Support for TPP by Rethinking ISDS›By Dan Pearson // Monday, July 27, 2015
President Obama’s approach to trade policy has not been particularly adroit. After running for office as a protectionist, he later decided to support freer trade, but never found a way to explain that shift to most of the Democratic Party. Passage of trade promotion authority (TPA) under difficult circumstances allows the administration to conclude the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), but congressional approval of that pact should not be taken for granted.
This is not a time for hubris. Rather, serious efforts should be made to address TPP concerns that have been raised by reasonable critics. One of the most contentious provisions is “investor-state dispute settlement,” or ISDS. The president should act decisively to boost support for TPP by eliminating or modifying ISDS.MORE
What Obama’s Trade Agenda Means for the Rest of the World›By Alan Wolff // Monday, July 20, 2015
The Trans Pacific Partnership has the potential of restoring positive momentum to the world trading system. Negotiations for a massive trade deal involving countries accounting for nearly half of the world’s economic activity are expected to wrap up in Maui at the end of this month, where trade ministers from 12 Pacific Rim countries will seek to conclude talks that have stretched over the better part of the decade. Looking back, it’s easy to view negotiations of the Trans Pacific Partnership as an Obama legacy issue, and it is. But that is looking at it too narrowly; the trade deal is something important for us individually and for America’s role in the world. That is why a majority in Congress, heavily of the other Party, gave this President a negotiating mandate in the form of “trade promotion authority” – so that he could conclude these trade talks.
It is worth looking at what the whole of TPP is about, because while individual pieces of the agreement deserve attention, the whole is more important than the sum of its parts. No magnifying glass is needed to examine the broad strokes.MORE
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