(Janet Bealer Rodie – Textile World)
New free trade agreements should help to open markets and enhance competitiveness for U.S. textiles and apparel — but will they?
The last year has been busy with regard to free trade agreement (FTA) approvals and other efforts to widen trade avenues for U.S. goods and services. In October 2011, President Barack Obama signed legislation to authorize agreements with Korea, Colombia and Panama; and the Korean and Colombian pacts now are in force. U.S. trade officials are engaged in ongoing negotiations to establish a Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) Agreement with a growing group of countries around the Pacific Rim in order to facilitate trade relations in that region.
Since 1994, the United States has implemented FTAs with 18 countries, not including Panama. The TPP Agreement would bring four more countries into its circle of FTA trading partners. In addition, 46 other countries are trading with the United States under trade preference programs. Read more here.
Date: July 25, 2012