Speaking on a conference call with the members of the Intergovernmental Policy Advisory Committee (IGPAC) this week, Acting U.S. Trade Representative Demetrios Marantis highlighted the Administration’s ambitious trade agenda for 2013, and the continuing contributions of the Office of the United States Trade Representative (USTR) to President Obama’s National Export Initiative (NEI) goal of supporting up to two million additional export-supported U.S. jobs by the end of 2014. Ambassador Marantis touched on several of USTR’s most important initiatives, including the Trans-Atlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP), the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), and the Trade in Services Agreement (TISA), and he detailed the ways in which these proposed agreements would help support jobs in IGPAC members’ states.
Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP)
USTR is in the midst of intensive stakeholder and Congressional consultations as it prepares to launch TTIP negotiations this summer. Ambassador Marantis noted USTR’s strong desire to stay in close contact with state and local officials throughout the TTIP negotiations.
Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP)
Ambassador Marantis spoke with IGPAC members on the latest TPP developments, including the Administration’s April 24th notification to Congress of its intent to include Japan in the negotiations. USTR issued a Federal Register Notice seeking public comment on Japan’s participation in TPP; public comments must be submitted by June 9th. The Ambassador emphasized the significant economic benefits that the inclusion of Japan in the TPP will deliver to all of the participating countries.
Trade in Services Agreement (TISA)
The proposed TISA agreement would be a powerful new tool for promoting U.S. exports by removing barriers to the international supply of services, Ambassador Marantis told the participants on the call. Every $1 billion in U.S. services exports supports an estimated 4,000 U.S. jobs. While the United States is currently the world's largest services trader, we have yet to achieve our full export potential.
IGPAC members are appointed by the U.S. Trade Representative and provide policy advice on issues involving trade, trade negotiations, and the operation of trade agreements in the framework of state-specific concerns. USTR engages with IGPAC regularly to solicit advice and feedback on U.S. trade policy and its effect on state issues. Closing the call, Ambassador Marantis reiterated USTR’s commitment to ongoing consultations with state and local officials throughout the country.