President Obama Signs the Trade Promotion Authority
Trade Agreements & Commercial Service Show Us Future with New TPA
Stefan M. Selig is the Under Secretary of Commerce for International Trade.
months of incredible work from everyone in ITA, the Department of Commerce and across
the administration, trade promotion authority
signed into law last Monday. With this new authority, we now have a tool that
will allow our country to finalize modern, high-standard trade agreements like
the Trans-Pacific Partnership and the Trans-Atlantic Trade and Investment Partnership.
These agreements will help our businesses operate in a global economy that has
changed dramatically - particularly given the rise of the digital economy - since
the last TPA was passed 13 years ago.
signing of TPA legislation is indeed a victory for all of ITA and for the entire
American business community. And if anyone still needs to see the positive
effects that free trade agreements yield, they can simply look to the 14
agreements we have with 20 nations today.
Nearly 3.2 million American jobs
by goods exports to our 20 free trade partners in 2014. That accounts for just
under 45% of the total jobs supported by goods exports. And since 2009, good
exports to our free trade partners grew by just under 65%, compared to 45% for
the rest of the world.
largest export markets are also NAFTA trade partners—Canada and Mexico—where we delivered more than
$600 billion in goods and services last year. But the success of NAFTA can also
be measured by the reduced costs of trading between our three countries, our
continuing progress towards streamlining trade and greater integration of our
supply chains, and the 258% increase in U.S. manufacturing exports to Mexico
and Canada over the past 20 years.
Polyguard Products—a Texas-based producer of
protective coatings for buildings, roads, and pipelines—offers its own example
of the payoffs of trade agreements. Polyguard won the President’s E
Award—recognizing excellence in exports—for expanding their sales into Colombia,
one of 11 Latin American free trade partner markets. Polyguard was assisted by
the North Texas U.S. Export Assistance Center, which identified export partners
for the company and assisted in day-to-day export issues.
other companies—Second Frontiers, a global technology consulting firm; and
Battery Concepts, a supplier of forklift batteries—are looking to utilize our trade agreements with
Nicaragua and Guatemala
to expand their export footprint. And both companies are working with our
Export Assistance Centers in Denver and El Paso respectively to pursue export
examples of Polyguard, Second Frontiers, and Battery Concepts share more in
common than trade agreements. These examples prove that the positive business
outcomes of our trade agreements do not come automatically. Those outcomes are
created through the best-in-class client service of our domestic and foreign
based commercial service officers. That is why I was proud to oversee the swearing in of a
new corps of commercial
service officers last month. They represent the best reason for why trade
promotion authority will lead to jobs, growth, and prosperity.
Thanks for everything you do to
support U.S. exports, business investment, and job creation.
ASEAN Information is Now Easier to Find on Export.gov
ASEAN site highlights trade opportunities in the 10 ASEAN countries: Brunei Darussalam, Burma, Cambodia, Indonesia, Lao PDR, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, and Vietnam.
Read how Polyguard Products, created a partnership that has grown steadily within the last nine years.