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NFTC President Says Two Senate Bills Introduced Today Signal Room for Bipartisan Cooperation on Trade-Related Issues
Date: 1/25/2011
Written By: Jennifer Cummings, The Fratelli Group for NFTC, (202) 822-9491

Washington DC – The National Foreign Trade Council (NFTC) welcomed two trade-related pieces of legislation introduced today – the Creating American Jobs Through Exports Act of 2011 and the SUGAR (Stop Unfair Giveaway and Restrictions) Act. The NFTC noted that both bills were introduced by a bipartisan set of co-sponsors – the first by Sens. Rob Portman (R-OH) and Joseph Lieberman (ID-CT), and the second by Sens. Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) and Mark Kirk (R-IL).

"The NFTC welcomes the introduction of these bills, both on their merits and because they are an early signal in the 112th Congress that Members are genuinely committed to working together on a bipartisan basis to increase U.S. economic growth through trade," said NFTC President Bill Reinsch.

"We applaud Sens. Portman and Lieberman for introducing a bill that calls on Congress to approve the three pending free trade agreements with Colombia, Panama and South Korea, and makes the case for restoring presidential Trade Promotion Authority," said Reinsch. "All three FTAs are critical to maximizing U.S. economic growth and job creation, and helping our exporters – from small- and medium sized businesses to large companies with worldwide operations – maintain and expand their foothold in these three dynamic markets."

"We also believe that to continue exploring avenues to boost the U.S. economy through trade, the President needs Trade Promotion Authority. This is an issue on which the NFTC has been actively involved for many years, and we look forward to continuing to share with Members of Congress our ideas for reforming and renewing negotiating authority," said Reinsch.

 
In 2009, the NFTC released a draft "Trade Negotiating Authority Act of 2009," which the Council developed to initiate debate over the appropriate objectives for negotiating trade agreements and an efficient "fast track" process for congressional consideration of implementing legislation. The NFTC's draft bill, which builds on existing Trade Promotion Authority, includes new provisions that update negotiating objectives and reform the Congressional-Executive consultation process.
 
With respect to the SUGAR Act, the NFTC has long advocated reform of the current U.S. sugar program, which sets artificially low import quotas and applies high tariffs on imports exceeding those limits – raising prices for American industry and consumers.

"As the debate over the 2012 farm bill is soon to begin, we applaud Sens. Shaheen and Kirk for taking an early stand and calling into question current U.S. sugar policy," said Reinsch. "Sugar prices are at an all-time high, and this issue not only affects consumers but U.S. sugar-using industries and the thousands of workers they employ."

For more information, please contact Jennifer Cummings at jcummings@fratelli.com.



About NFTC
Advancing Global Commerce for Over 95 Years - The National Foreign Trade Council (www.nftc.org) 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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