USTR.gov Headlines May 13th

05/13/2011 – 3:51pm

Today, President Obama signed a proclamation regarding World Trade Week. Below is the proclamation.

WORLD TRADE WEEK, 2011

BY THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA

A PROCLAMATION

American businesses embody the ingenuity and entrepreneurship that has defined our Nation since its founding, and they consistently reinvent themselves to adapt to changing times. As we recover from a historic economic recession, enterprising commercial leaders continue to look beyond our borders to supply the world with innovative and technologically advanced products and services. Millions of jobs in the United States are tied to exports, and our world continues to grow more interdependent.

World Trade Week is a time to highlight the vital connection between the global economy and the prosperity of our own country. Our 21st-century economy requires American businesses and workers to compete in an international marketplace. To ensure our success, we must advance a robust, forward-looking trade agenda that emphasizes exports and domestic job growth.

Last year, my Administration launched the National Export Initiative, an effort to marshal the full resources of the Federal Government behind America’s businesses, large and small, and help them sell their goods, services, and ideas to the world. Though the United States remains a leading exporter, this Initiative is redoubling our efforts to ensure American companies have free and fair access in trade, and it is building on our successes in export-driven growth. Through this effort, we can help even more American companies grow, compete, and thrive in global markets and help reach our goal of doubling exports in 5 years by 2015. In turn, those companies will be able to hire more American workers to produce the goods and services they sell to customers around the world.

By out-innovating, out-educating, and out-building the rest of the world, we can keep Americans working and export more of the high-quality products and services for which our workers and companies are admired. With a commitment to winning the future, we can continue to lead the world in attracting the jobs, businesses, and industries of tomorrow.

NOW, THEREFORE, I, BARACK OBAMA, President of the United States of America, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and the laws of the United States, do hereby proclaim May 15 through May 21, 2011, as World Trade Week. I encourage all Americans to observe this week with events, trade shows, and educational programs that celebrate and inform Americans about the benefits of trade to our Nation and the global economy.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this thirteenth day of May, in the year of our Lord two thousand eleven, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and thirty-fifth.

BARACK OBAMA

05/12/2011 – 9:42am
Today Ambassador Ron Kirk and Secretary Tom Vilsack are testifying before the House Agriculture Committee regarding the pending trade agreements with South Korea, Panama, and Colombia. You can watch the hearing live on the Committee’s website here starting at 10:00 a.m. ET.
05/11/2011 – 1:11pm

On May 4, Assistant U.S. Trade Representative for Textiles Gail Strickler traveled to Yadkinville, North Carolina to participate in the official opening of the REPREVE® Recycling Center at Unifi’s state of the art G. Allen Mebane Industrial Complex. Unifi is a producer of polyester and nylon textured yarns. The company develops branded yarns that provide unique performance, comfort, and aesthetic advantages.

05/09/2011 – 10:08am
On Thursday, Ambassador Kirk spoke with Fred Katayama of Reuters Insider about the three pending trade agreements.  Watch the interview here.
05/05/2011 – 2:22pm

Today, Ambassador Kirk was a guest speaker at Congressman Adam Smith’s annual Ninth District Day. This event brings constituents from the Seattle-Tacoma area to Washington, D.C. for a day of briefings and discussions with top policymakers in the United States government.

Ambassador Kirk outlined the positive impact of trade on Representative Smith’s district, and he described how the Obama Administration’s trade agenda aims to double exports in support of Washington State jobs. For example, in the communities around the Ninth District, there are more than 66,500 jobs in the manufacturing sector that are expected to benefit from the U.S.-South Korea trade agreement. Ambassador Kirk noted that today staff from USTR and Congress began the next step, working together on the draft implementing bill, needed to move forward with this trade agreement.
Ambassador Kirk and Congressman Adam Smith

Overall, in 2009, the Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue metropolitan area exported $36.9 billion worth of goods in a wide variety of sectors, including: Transportation Equipment ($25.8 billion); Computer and Electronic Products ($2.5 billion); Miscellaneous Manufacturing Products ($1.3 billion); and Processed Foods ($1 billion).

05/04/2011 – 5:13pm

Today, on a rainy day in Washington, D.C., 15 USTR staff members ran in the 30th Capital Challenge. It is a three-mile race for runners and wheel chair athletes from the executive, legislative, and judicial branches of the Federal Government, as well as members of the media. Proceeds from the race benefit the Special Olympics of Washington, D.C.

Under the rules of the race each team must have a senior official of the agency as its captain. The three USTR teams were led by Stan McCoy, Assistant U.S. Trade Representative for Intellectual Property and Innovation; Luis Jimenez, Assistant U.S. Trade Representative for Legislative Affairs; and Jim Sanford, Assistant U.S. Trade Representative for Small Business, Market Access, and Industrial Competitiveness. USTR teams included runners from nine offices within the agency. Jim Sanford also took home the award for fastest sub-Cabinet level Male.

Among executive branch teams, USTR’s “Fast Trackers” took fifth place honors. “Deal Makers” and “Special Three-Oh-Run” finished in 15th and 23rd places, respectively.

05/03/2011 – 11:20am

This week, Ambassador Kirk will be delivering remarks in recognition of World IP Day. Established by WIPO (World Intellectual Property Organization) Member States in 2000, World IP Day Day (officially observed on April 26) focuses global attention on the critical contributions of creativity and innovation to economic growth. This occasion also emphasizes the importance of protecting intellectual property rights to foster advancement in the arts, science, and beyond.

American creativity and innovation help drive the U.S. economy. American ingenuity is a major competitive advantage in world markets. Intellectual property-intensive industries support an estimated 18 million jobs in the United States.

USTR takes its stewardship of U.S. creativity and innovation through trade policy very seriously, and fights for enhanced protection of U.S. intellectual property rights (IPR) throughout the world. Because now, national economies are more closely linked than ever through international trade and new technologies, our trade agreements include state-of-the-art protections of intellectual property rights.

In addition to negotiating and enforcing such agreements, USTR also uses the “Special 301” process to continue a dialogue with our trading partners and to press for reforms and enhanced IPR vigilance. On Monday, May 2, USTR released the 2011 Special 301 Report that includes an open invitation to all trading partners listed in the report to cooperatively develop action plans to resolve IPR issues of concern.

See statements of support regarding this year’s Special 301 Report below.

“USTR’s Report signals strongly the Administration’s commitment to protect our nation’s creative industries abroad through strong copyright protection, reducing piracy through more effective enforcement, and toppling market access barriers, steps that will help boost U.S. exports, create good jobs here at home, and contribute to U.S. economic growth, in line with the Administration’s goals.”

– Statement by Eric H. Smith, counsel to the International Intellectual Property Alliance (IIPA)

“The USTR’s Special 301 report is a stark reminder of the challenges facing the strongest and most reliable American exporters – the creators of filmed entertainment. Movie theft, especially online, is a growing threat – not only to the 2.4 million men and women working in the motion picture and television community, but also to the health of the American economy as a whole…We thank the Ambassador Ron Kirk for his continued commitment to enhancing protection for American products abroad, and workers at home.”

– Statement by Senator Chris Dodd, Chairman and CEO of the Motion Picture Association of America, Inc. (MPAA)

“USTR continues to shine the light on illicit practices around the globe that must be addressed in order to expand trade in legitimate products and services. We thank them and their colleagues in other agencies for their diligence and vision in identifying such practices, and in demanding that U.S. trading partners adopt legal or enforcement reforms designed to achieve better copyright protection, particularly in connection with digital commerce.”

– Statement by Neil Turkewitz, Executive Vice President, International, Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA)

04/28/2011 – 3:41pm

This week’s trade spotlight highlights a new online tool for small businesses to take advantage of exporting to U.S. trade agreement partners.  Deputy U.S. Trade Representative for Small Business, Market Access, and Industrial Competitiveness Christina Sevilla talks below about the new online tool and its importance for America’s small businesses.

New Online Free Trade Agreement Tariff Tool Will Help Small Businesses Take Advantage of Export Opportunities
By: Christina Sevilla, Deputy Assistant U.S. Trade Representative for Small Business, Market Access, and Industrial Competitiveness

More than a quarter million American small businesses export from across all fifty states. They sell U.S. products and services around the world – thereby increasing their revenues, broadening and diversifying their customer base, and supporting good jobs in their communities. A particular priority of President Obama’s National Export Initiative (NEI) is to expand exports by small businesses. This will contribute to his goal of doubling U.S. exports by the end of 2014 in order to support two million additional jobs for American workers. We invite more small and medium-sized businesses to join us in this national effort to grow our economy through exports. To help do that, the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative, the Department of Commerce and the Small Business Administration have unveiled a new Free Trade Agreement (FTA) Tariff Tool. This is a free online tool available to businesses and the public for the first time.

The new FTA Tariff Tool empowers the user to perform, instantly and at a glance, searches for tariff treatment for specific industrial products under each U.S. FTA. This will help small manufacturers with planning to enter into new export markets. The tool also enables the user to access market and sector reports and other FTA-related information useful for small businesses seeking new opportunities to sell goods and services abroad.

As a small business owner, manager, or employee seeking to begin or expand your exports, which foreign markets should you consider? Some markets are easier to do business in than others. U.S. FTA partner markets are a very good place to start looking. Most U.S. small firms begin by selling to our North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) partners Canada and Mexico. However, the United States is a party to 17 FTAs with partners around the world, like the five Central American countries (Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua) and the Dominican Republic, Chile, Peru, Singapore, Australia, and Morocco. Agreements with Korea, Colombia, and Panama are pending. Small and medium-sized businesses represent the vast majority of U.S. exporting companies to these countries.

Trade agreements have helped to open the door to American small business exports with key partners around the world. This new FTA Tariff Tool will empower many more small and medium-sized firms to take advantage of these trade opportunities. Go here to discover cost-saving tariff reductions for your product, and consider an FTA market for your next foreign sale.


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About Alexander Gordin
An international merchant banking professional with over twenty years of business operating and advisory experience in the areas of export finance, international project finance, risk mitigation and cross-border business development. Clients include foreign governments, municipalities and state enterprises as well as Fortune 500 and small/medium enterprises. Strong entrepreneurial instincts, combined with leadership and strategic skills. Transactional and negotiations experience in over thirty five countries. Author of the highly acclaimed "Fluent in Foreign Business" book and creator of the "Fluent in OPIC", "Fluent in EXIM","Fluent In Foreign Franchising", "Fluent in FCPA",and "Fluent in USTDA" seminar/webinar series. Currently developing "Fluent In ......" seminars and publications. Co-author of the Fi3 Country Business Appeal Indices. Extensive international business development and project finance transaction experience in healthcare, aerospace, ICT, conventional and alternative energy infrastructure, distribution and hospitality industries. Experience managing international public and private corporations. Co-Founded three companies abroad. Strong Emerging and Frontier Market expertise. Published and featured in numerous publications including: The Wall Street Journal, Knowledge@Wharton, NBC.com, The Chicago Tribune, Industry Week, Industry Today, Business Finance, Wharton Magazine Blog, NY Enterprise Report, Success magazine, Kyiv Post and on a number of radio and television programs including: Voice of America, CNBC, CNNfn, and Bloomberg. Frequent speaker on strategy, cross-border finance and international business development. Executive MBA from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania. B.S. in Management of Information Systems from the Polytechnic Institute of NYU. Specialties Strategic Management Advisory, Export Finance, International Project Finance & Risk Management, Cross-border Negotiations, Structured Finance transactions, Senior Government and Corporate officials liason

One Response to USTR.gov Headlines May 13th

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