Today, Ambassador Kirk spoke at the U.S.-Panama Business Council’s Panama Week 2012 luncheon. His remarks focused on entry into force of the U.S.-Panama Trade Promotion Agreement and the Obama Administration’s comprehensive approach to trade throughout the Western Hemisphere.
“Entry into force of the U.S.-Panama trade agreement is good news for businesses and workers in both Panama and the United States. By eliminating tariffs and other barriers to U.S. exports of goods and services, the agreement continues to build on a strong baseline of growing two-way trade and investment between our countries,” said Ambassador Kirk.
Ambassador Kirk specifically thanked Panamanian Trade Minister Ricardo Quijano and Panamanian Ambassador to the United States Mario Jaramillo for their tireless efforts to bring the agreement to fruition. Ambassador Kirk also thanked members of the U.S.-Panama Business Council for their steadfast support and advocacy for the agreement. He encouraged private sector representatives to keep in touch with both the U.S. and Panamanian governments in the months ahead.
The U.S.-Panama trade agreement marks a major milestone in the strong U.S.-Panama partnership and reflects the Obama Administration’s continuing focus on trade with Latin America. With the U.S.-Panama trade agreement entering into force, 12 out of the United States’ 20 free trade agreement partner countries are located in the Western Hemisphere.