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To foster trade and development in innovative new ways, the U.S. free trade agreement with the Dominican Republic and five Central American countries includes a Trade Capacity Building Committee. Each country identifies its needs in a "National Action Plan for Trade Capacity Building." In turn, donors respond with ideas for projects. Donors include: U.S. Government agencies, international institutions, corporations and non-governmental organizations. The CAFTA-DR Committee on Trade Capacity Building (TCB) recognizes the importance of promoting economic growth, reducing poverty, and adjusting to liberalized trade. This committee ensures that TCB activities respond to needs identified by the CAFTA-DR countries in their "National Action Plans." The Committee on TCB has met three times, most recently in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic in November 2008. The next meeting is scheduled for fall 2009 in Washington, D.C. The committee for the United States is co-chaired by the USTR and the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID).
BEIJING – Senior U.S. trade officials today encouraged China to create an open environment for innovation and make progress on other priority trade issues at the first-ever Mid-Year Review Meeting for the U.S.-China Joint Commission on Commerce and Trade (JCCT). The meeting allowed the two governments to take stock of our trade and investment relationship, identify key policy concerns, and prepare for the upcoming 2010 JCCT plenary meeting.
Under Secretary of Commerce for International Trade Francisco Sánchez and Deputy United States Trade Representative Demetrios Marantis co-chaired the meeting for the United States with their Chinese counterpart Vice Minister of Commerce Ma Xiuhong.
“Today’s meeting will help us promote open trade and cross-border investment, create an open environment for innovation, and enhance transparency and the rule of law. I believe we have laid the groundwork for a successful JCCT later in 2010 that will help spur economic growth and job creation,” Sánchez said. “We are working to leverage the JCCT as well as other forums with China and other countries to help achieve President Obama’s goal of doubling U.S. exports in the next five years.”
“We are rolling up our sleeves to work on the tough issues that directly affect U.S. jobs and exports of goods and services,” Ambassador Marantis said. “We are focused on addressing indigenous innovation and other discriminatory industrial policies, improving enforcement of intellectual property rights, and ending non science-based regulations that block U.S. agricultural exports.”
The JCCT, established in 1983, is the main forum for addressing bilateral trade matters and promoting commercial opportunities between the United States and China. Since 2003, when the status of the JCCT was elevated, the Secretary of Commerce and the U.S. Trade Representative have co-chaired the United States side and a Vice Premier has chaired the Chinese side. In 2009, China was the United States’ third-largest export market and remains a critical destination for U.S. manufactured goods and services.
Francisco Sánchez’s trip to China is his first since becoming Under Secretary for International Trade on March 29, 2010. While in Beijing, he also participated in the U.S.-China Strategic & Economic Dialogue and met with U.S. industry leaders and Chinese government officials to help increase U.S. exports to China. He also visited the USA Pavilion to meet with the pavilion sponsors at the Shanghai Expo.
This is the fifth trip to China by Demetrios Marantis since taking his post as Deputy U.S. Trade Representative on May 6, 2009. During his visit to Beijing, he also participated in the U.S.-China Strategic & Economic Dialogue and held a number of other meetings with Chinese officials and U.S. companies.