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International investment pays large and important dividends for the U.S. economy and American workers by increasing exports, improving productivity, creating jobs, and raising wages.
Protection of investors and investment is essential to ensure that U.S. firms and workers can compete on a level playing field and are treated according to the rule of law in foreign markets.
With statutory responsibility for the development, negotiation, and implementation of much of U.S. international investment policy, USTR works to maximize the benefits of international investment to U.S. companies and American workers, while ensuring that important public policy interests are not compromised.
USTR does this through investment agreements, through the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States, and through its engagement on global and bilateral investment issues.
Bilateral investment treaties (BITs) and Free Trade Agreements (FTAs) with investment chapters provide binding legal rules regarding one country's treatment of investors and investments from another country.
The negotiation and implementation of high-standard BITs and FTAs with investment chapters helps promote economic reforms, improve investment climates, and attract new investment. It also serves broader U.S. policy objectives, such as enhancing regulatory transparency and promoting the rule of law.
The United States has BITs in force with 40 countries and FTAs with investment chapters in force with 17 countries.
USTR and the State Department co-lead the negotiation of BITs, and USTR leads the negotiation of FTAs.
Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States
The Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS) is an interagency committee chaired by the Department of the Treasury that reviews the national security implications of certain foreign investments in the United States.
As a member of CFIUS, USTR seeks to ensure that the CFIUS process operates transparently and with rigorous adherence to applicable laws and regulations, so that the United States effectively protects the national security, while maintaining an open investment environment.
Global and Bilateral Investment Issues
USTR leads the U.S. delegation in investment policy dialogues in the context of APEC and the NAFTA, and participates actively as a member of the U.S. team in the investment discussions of the OECD and G-8.
USTR routinely engages with U.S. trade partners, through Trade and Investment Framework Agreements (TIFAs) and other bilateral dialogues, to address country-specific investment barriers.