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Associations Urge Senate Leaders to Reject House Climate Bill Provisions That Could Negatively Impact Trade Relations
Date: 7/22/2009

Washington, DC - The National Foreign Trade Council (NFTC), along with the Emergency Committee for American Trade, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and the U.S. Council for International Business, today wrote Senate leaders, urging them to refrain from including in their bill certain trade and competitiveness provisions included in the House-passed American Clean Energy and Security Act of 2009.

In a letter to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, the four groups wrote:

"We urge the Senate to refrain from including provisions that could negatively impact U.S. relations with key trading partners and disrupt the global trading system. We believe any successful legislation that aims to restrain greenhouse gas emissions must abide by U.S. international trade obligations and should encourage action by other major emitting countries.

"We are concerned that some provisions contained in H.R. 2454, such as those creating the international reserve allowance program and permitting tariffs or "border measures" on carbon-intensive imports, are highly inflexible, and likely to conflict with obligations the United States has undertaken in international trade agreements. In fact, these provisions are already stirring consternation among some of our key trading partners and could trigger a 'green trade war.'

"Climate change is a global problem that calls for international cooperation, not unilateral ultimatums.... In the midst of a global recession, we agree wholeheartedly with President Obama that "we have to be careful about sending any protectionist signals" in the context of this important legislation."

To read the full text of the letter, click here.

NFTC President Bill Reinsch and NFTC Vice President for Global Trade Issues Jake Colvin are available for comment. Please contact Jennifer Cummings (jcummings@fratelli.com) at 202-822-9491.
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Advancing Global Commerce for 95 Years - The National Foreign Trade Council is a leading business organization advocating an open, rules-based global trading system. Founded in 1914 by a broad-based group of American companies, the NFTC now serves hundreds of member companies through its offices in Washington and New York.

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