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U.S., Peru Work to Strengthen Ties, Create Economic Opportunities for Workers, Businesses, Farmers, Ranchers

07/14/2011

Lima, Peru – The United States and Peru convened the second meeting of the Free Trade Commission (FTC) of the United States-Peru Trade Promotion Agreement (PTPA) yesterday in Lima, Peru. John Melle, Assistant U.S. Trade Representative for the Western Hemisphere, led the U.S. delegation. Carlos Posada, Vice Minister of Foreign Trade and Tourism led the delegation for Peru.

“The PTPA has strengthened ties between our governments and created new economic opportunities for our workers, businesses, farmers and ranchers. Both governments noted the good work that has been carried out jointly to achieve an effective implementation of the PTPA and to ensure that workers and businesses of all sizes have the opportunity to take advantage of the benefits created by the Agreement,” said John Melle. “The United States looks forward to continuing to work with Peru to further our bilateral trade relationship as well as advance the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement and other multilateral trade initiatives. We thank the Peruvian government for hosting the second Free Trade Commission meeting.”

At the FTC meeting, officials discussed bilateral trade, investment and economic issues as well as the administration of the PTPA. Both governments acknowledged the progress over the last year to implement the commitments under the Agreement, particularly the passage by Peru of the Forestry and Wildlife Law. That law sets out key reforms called for under the PTPA’s Annex on Forest Sector Governance aimed at combating illegal logging and illegal trade in wildlife. The governments discussed plans to continue to work together to effectively monitor implementation of, and compliance with, environment and labor obligations. Officials also discussed commitments under the Intellectual Property Rights Chapter of the Agreement.

Additionally, officials received a report of the first meeting of the Small- and Medium-Sized Enterprise (SME) Working Group. The working group was established to enhance the ability of small businesses to capitalize on the benefits of the PTPA. The parties discussed the example of the U.S. Small Business Development Center (SBDC) model for helping small businesses to grow. The SME Working Group also released a brochure to raise awareness of opportunities for small businesses in both countries. Frequently Asked Questions About Opportunities for Small Business to Export Under the United States-Peru Trade Promotion Agreement can be viewed in English and Spanish.

Today, the Parties will hold a meeting of the Subcommittee on Forest Sector Governance to review progress on implementation of the Annex on Forest Sector Governance.

BACKGROUND

The PTPA entered into force on February 1, 2009. The PTPA eliminates tariffs and removes non-tariff barriers to U.S. goods and services trade, provides a secure, predictable legal framework for investors, and strengthens protection for intellectual property, workers, and the environment. The PTPA is the first agreement in force that incorporates enhanced provisions concerning the protection of the environment and labor rights that were included as part of the May 10, 2007 bipartisan Congressional-Executive agreement on trade.

Two-way goods trade between the United States and Peru was $11.8 billion in 2010.