FACT SHEET: In Third Year, Ambassador Katherine Tai Delivers on Biden-Harris Administration’s Worker-Centered Trade Policy

WASHINGTON – Last month marked three years since United States Trade Representative Katherine Tai was sworn in as the 19th United States Trade Representative. In Ambassador Tai’s third year, the Office of the United States Trade Representative (USTR) has continued to deliver on the Biden-Harris Administration’s novel worker-centered trade policy, one that drives economic prosperity and opportunity for all Americans, including those from underserved, underrepresented, and overburdened communities.

See below for highlights from Ambassador Tai’s third year:



United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) Rapid Response Mechanism (RRM): USTR has increased enforcement of the groundbreaking RRM enforcement tool, requesting Mexico’s review 22 times since the start of the Biden-Harris Administration. The tool has been so effective in delivering real results to workers that the U.S. has seen an uptick in petitions. USTR’s fact sheet on the RRM can be found here. As of April 10, 2024:

  • Nearly 30,000 workers have directly benefitted from the RRM;
  • Over five million dollars has been secured in backpay and benefits to workers;
  • 17 cases have resulted in either comprehensive remediation plans or were otherwise successfully resolved;
  • 11 cases have included backpay to workers;
  • Nine cases have included reinstatements of workers;
  • Nine cases have resulted in independent unions representing workers at the facility;
  • Many cases have resulted in successful negotiations for higher wages, workers’ rights trainings, and improved policies at the facilities.

Forced Labor Enforcement Task Force (FLETF): USTR is an active member of the interagency effort to monitor the enforcement of the prohibition on the import of products made by forced labor into the United States. As a result of the FLETF’s work, dozens of companies have been added to the Uyghur Forced Labor Prevention Act (UFLPA) Entity List, and any goods made in whole or part by the listed entities are subject to the UFLPA rebuttable presumption and prohibited from import into the United States.
DELIVERING FOR FARMERS AND AGRICULTURAL PRODUCERS: Under Ambassador Tai’s leadership, USTR is delivering important wins for domestic agricultural stakeholders, including farmers, producers, and processors, as U.S. agricultural exports totaled $181 billion in 2023.

A full list of all agriculture wins under Ambassador Tai’s leadership, including over 20 secured in 2023, can be found here.

  • Re-Opened Colombia's Poultry Market: On February 26, 2024, following extensive engagement with USTR, Colombia formally re-opened their market for U.S. poultry and egg products. This is an important win for U.S. poultry producers who exported over $101 million in poultry and egg products to Colombia in 2022.
  • Improved Market Access in India: Throughout 2023, Ambassador Tai secured several important agreements with India to benefit of American agricultural and industrial producers, including a 70% reduction of the tariff on pecans, the removal of retaliatory tariffs on almonds, apples, chickpeas, lentils and walnuts, boric acid, and diagnostic reagents. The United States and India also agreed to resolve all seven outstanding World Trade Organization (WTO) disputes last year. In 2024, India further reduced its tariffs on frozen turkey, frozen duck, and fresh, frozen, dried, and processed blueberries and cranberries.
  • Advocating for Agriculture Producers in USMCA: Ambassador Tai and USTR continue to leverage the tools of the USMCA to ensure the promises of the Agreement to America’s farmers and producers are fully realized. Last year, the United States requested a panel under the USMCA to review Mexico’s ban on biotech corn, which threatens our safe and high-quality agricultural exports and is not based on science. The United States also fought for domestic dairy producers unfairly disadvantaged in Canada in another USMCA panel.
  • Re-Opened South Africa’s Poultry Market: Following extensive engagement by USTR, including interventions at the WTO Committee on the Application of Sanitary and Phytosanitary Measures, South Africa announced it would lift restrictions on U.S. poultry and poultry product exports from 27 states that have been declared free from highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI). South Africa’s restrictions on U.S. poultry had been in place well after the states had been declared HPAI-free.
  • Expanded Japan’s Ethanol Market: Japan implemented a new biofuels policy that will allow the United States to capture up to 100 percent of Japan’s on-road ethanol market. Under the new policy, exports of American ethanol could increase by over 80 million gallons annually, representing an additional $150-200 million in exports each year.

Over the last three years, the Biden-Harris Administration has pursued a multi-faceted strategy that accounts for the current realities in the U.S.-People’s Republic of China (PRC) trade relationship and the current harms and the threats that the PRC poses for the United States, secure and resilient supply chains, and our economic and national security. Under President Biden’s leadership, the United States has finally invested at home in our workers and the industries of today and tomorrow, like high-tech and greener steel, electric vehicles (EVs) and batteries, solar energy products, semiconductors, and more. The Administration continues to take actions to address the PRC’s non-market excess capacity and distortions across key economic sectors, such as by enhancing steel and aluminum tariffs and maintaining Section 301 tariffs while reviewing how to increase their effectiveness.

At the same time, Ambassador Tai and the Biden-Harris Administration continue to build a coalition of allies and partners willing to speak out on economic coercion and non-market policies and practices, and to take action to address non-market policies affecting critical minerals, steel and aluminum, semiconductors, and other industries. Ambassador Tai has also raised these concerns with China’s non-market excess capacity, non-market policies and practices, and targeting of key industrial sectors, like steel, solar, EVs, and semiconductors, directly with the PRC.

STRENGTHENING ALLIANCES AND CREATING NEW PARTNERSHIPS: USTR has continued to progress strategic partnerships with countries who share our priorities. Examples of this include:

  • U.S.-Taiwan 21st Century Trade Initiative: In June 2023, the United States and Taiwan, under the auspices of the American Institute in Taiwan (AIT) and the Taipei Economic and Cultural Representative Office in the United States (TECRO), signed the first agreement under the Initiative, which includes high-standard commitments and economically meaningful outcomes in a number of areas.  The United States and Taiwan, under the auspices of AIT and TECRO, are continuing negotiations on a second agreement covering other economically significant areas.
  • U.S.-Kenya Strategic Trade and Investment Partnership: Since launching negotiations in July 2022, the United States and Kenya are continuing discussions on high-standard commitments in a wide range of areas with a view to increasing investment; promoting sustainable and inclusive economic growth; benefiting workers, consumers, and businesses (including micro, small, and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs); and supporting African regional economic integration.
  • The Indo-Pacific Economic Framework for Prosperity (IPEF): The United States and our IPEF partners have made considerable and substantial progress on several chapters of the Trade Pillar.  USTR is fully committed to continuing this work to advance our shared vision for a high-standard agreement under the Trade Pillar. 
  • Americas Partnership for Economic Prosperity: The United States is working with other founding members to enhance economic cooperation in our hemisphere and drive inclusive, people-centered economic growth.  Building on the Leaders’ Summit of the Americas Partnership in November 2023, USTR is working closely with our partners to establish a Council on Trade and Competitiveness, which will meet regularly to implement the guidance with respect to trade matters in the East Room Declaration of the Leaders of the Americas Partnership.
  • U.S.-EU Trade and Technology Council (TTC): The cooperation between the United States and the European Union continues to be the bedrock for dealing with global challenges, and the TTC has played a vital role in shaping a forward-looking dialogue and facilitating unprecedented coordination and quick responses to key trade and technology related issues and developments, not least in the context of Russia’s continued aggression against Ukraine. The TTC remains an important forum, and the U.S. and EU will continue to refine and adapt this forum to advance our shared objectives. We have used the TTC to address global trade challenges, strengthen our economic and trade ties, accelerate the transition to climate-neutral economies, and boost our economic security. 
  • Successful Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Host Year: Ambassador Tai and USTR advanced the United States’ host year theme of “Building a Resilient and Sustainable Future for All” through several meetings throughout the year, including at the Detroit APEC Ministers Responsible for Trade meeting and an unprecedented APEC dialogue with labor leaders in May 2023 and the San Francisco Ministerial Meeting in November 2023. The November convening included a first-of-its-kind meeting between ministers and Indigenous leaders to discuss how to create economic and trade policies that benefit historically overlooked and underserved communities and also resulted in the Leader-level San Francisco Principles on Integrating Inclusivity and Sustainability into Trade and Investment Policy.
  • Successful African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) Forum: The United States and South Africa co-hosted the 2023 AGOA Forum in Johannesburg, South Africa in November. During the Forum, Ambassador Tai met with senior officials and representatives of several AGOA-eligible countries, civil society and labor stakeholders, and re-affirmed the importance of the partnership between the United States and sub-Saharan Africa in driving economic opportunity for Africans and Americans, including the African Diaspora in the United States.


  • Enforcement of United States-Peru Trade Promotion Agreement (PTPA): USTR has continued to enforce the unique Forest Annex present in the Agreement, ensuring that illegally harvested timber is not permitted to enter domestic supply chains.
  • Leading discussions among WTO Members on climate and trade issues: USTR issued a communication intended to advance discussions among WTO Members on practical and constructive ways that trade policies can support and complement efforts to address climate change.
  • Enhancing USG monitoring and enforcement efforts of the USMCA Environment obligations: USTR has established several interagency agreements to enhance enforcement of the USMCA environment provisions.  Among many actions, these agreements strengthen forestry management in Mexico, enhance Southern border interdiction efforts of illegally harvested products, promote conservation of marine species, expand analysis capabilities to identify trafficked goods, and prioritize prosecutions of environmental crimes. 
  • Progress on Global Arrangement on Sustainable Steel and Aluminum: Ambassador Tai led negotiations to advance a global arrangement with the European Union to address carbon intensity and non-market excess capacity in the steel and aluminum industries.
  • Support for a More Circular Economy through Trade Policy: Throughout 2023, USTR continued to promote trade-related circular approaches, leading a circular economy and remanufacturing-focused session at the WTO’s Trade and Environment Week, pursuing circular economy commitments in discussions with trading partners, and facilitating relevant work in APEC’s Committee on Trade and Investment under the United States-led Recyclable Materials Policy Program.


  • Members delivered several significant development outcomes at the WTO’s Thirteenth Ministerial Conference (MC13):  The United States welcomed the accession of two new least-developed country (LDC) Members, Comoros and Timor-Leste. The United States looks forward to working with them as they implement their post-accession strategies.  The United States also ensured that Members graduating from the LDC category can continue a smooth transition, agreed to support their capacity to effectively utilize the Agreements on Technical Barriers to Trade and Sanitary and Phytosanitary Measures, supported a work program for small and vulnerable economies, and agreed to hold dedicated sessions on issues important to land-locked developing countries.
  • Advancing Dispute Settlement Reform: Ambassador Tai has been clear in her commitment to reforming the WTO so it can better serve the needs of all WTO Members. In the time between MC12 and MC13, significant progress was made on dispute settlement reform by engaging in a collaborative, interest-based approach. Ambassador Tai and USTR remain dedicated to working with all WTO Members to identify new ideas and improvements that can help all Members more effectively resolve disputes and make the system more accessible at the same time. Ambassador Tai’s remarks on dispute settlement reform at the WTO can be viewed here.
  • Accomplishing an Extension of the e-Commerce Moratorium at MC13: The e-commerce moratorium is a measure which restricts countries from applying customs duties on electronic transmissions. Ambassador Tai’s statement on MC13 can be viewed here.
  • Promoting Fundamental Reform at the World Trade Organization to Serve the Needs of Workers and Address the Climate Crisis: In a major speech, Ambassador Tai underscored that the goal of reforming the WTO is to provide confidence that the system is fair and to revitalize the agency of Members to settle their disputes.  Ambassador Tai highlighted that any reformed system should bring an end to judicial overreaching and restore policy space so that Members can regulate and find solutions to their pressing needs, such as defending their workers’ interests from non-market policies and tackling the climate crisis. 
  • WTO Agreement on Fisheries Subsidies: Last April, Ambassador Tai signed the United States’ instrument of acceptance of the WTO agreement on fisheries subsidies – the first ever multilateral trade agreement with environmental sustainability at its core. The United States was among the first countries to sign the agreement, which will protect our shared environment from harmful and unsustainable fisheries subsidies practices.


  • Ambassador Tai has set out to meet people where they are, particularly those who have been historically excluded from policymaking conversations and the benefits of trade.
  • In 2023 alone, Ambassador Tai and USTR officials visited more than 20 states – an unprecedented undertaking by a U.S. Trade Representative to involve more Americans across the country in trade policymaking. Ambassador Tai met with farmers, agricultural producers, workers, union leaders, Indigenous leaders, small business owners, and cicil, human rights, and community-based organizations. She toured factory floors, ports, state fairs, farms, and more to hear from those who are directly impacted by trade.
  • To inform the United States approach towards advancing inclusive trade, USTR published its first-ever Federal Register notice seeking public comment to inform USTR how trade and investment policy may be designed to expand the benefits of trade to include underserved and marginalized communities in the United States and with trading partners who share concerns about rising inequality.  Ambassador Tai consulted with a wide range of stakeholders, including those that have not traditionally been invited to the table, and increased access to negotiations by releasing summaries of negotiating text for key trade initiatives.
  • Ambassador Tai requested that the U.S. International Trade Commission repeat the independent distributional effects investigation every three years for the next 15 years. Consequently, policymakers, researchers, and the public will be able to monitor and ensure progress in closing data and research gaps and gathering the necessary information to assess the distributional effects of trade and trade policy on U.S. workers, especially in underrepresented and underserved communities.
  • As co-chair of the White House Initiative on Asian Americans, Native Hawaiians and Pacific Islanders (WHIAANHPI), Ambassador Tai has continued to advocate for these communities in her work and engage with diaspora communities throughout her travel. Major engagements included co-launching the WHIAANHPI economic summit series, a key speech on her experience as the first Asian American and Senate-confirmed, woman of color to serve as the United States Trade Representative, opening Commission meetings, as well as several AA and NHPI community-based roundtables throughout her domestic travels.


  • White House Competition Council: Ambassador Tai was appointed to the White House Competition Council to ensure trade policy supports the President’s competition agenda. Trade policy must support the fair, open, competitive marketplace that has long been a cornerstone of the American economy.


  • Increasing Resilience: On March 7, USTR requested public comments through a Federal Register Notice to inform objectives and strategies that advance U.S. supply chain resilience in trade negotiations, enforcement, and other initiatives. USTR is also holding public hearings in D.C. and across the country to hear input from as many Americans as possible. More details on USTR’s supply chain resilience work can be found here.
  • Trade Policy to Promote Greater Security: In a major speech, Ambassador Tai connected United States trade policy, national security, and economic security for working people, underscoring the need to reform trade to increase supply chain resilience through diversification and investment in American manufacturing, as showcased by the shortfalls experienced during the COVID-19 pandemic and Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine.