Council Calls Deal a Step In the Right Direction
Washington, DC – On the heels of news Friday that South Korea intends to fully reopen its market to U.S. beef, National Foreign Trade Council (NFTC) Vice President of Regional Trade Initiatives Chuck Dittrich today released the following statement.
“We are encouraged by news that Korea has agreed to fully reopen its market to U.S. beef, and view this as a step forward in our bilateral relations. Resuming full beef trade between the United States and Korea is beneficial to both countries, as well as the many cattlemen and beef producers all across America.
“As full access to Korea’s beef market is important to the U.S. economy and necessary for congressional consideration and approval of the U.S.-Korea FTA, we hope that this new agreement will be sustained over the long-term. The NFTC applauds the U.S. and Korean governments for reaching agreement on this issue. ”
Last week as part of the U.S.-Korea FTA Business Coalition, the NFTC and other leading business groups sent a letter to Congress, highlighting the importance of Korea’s market and making an economic argument for congressional approval of the free trade agreement.
With an economy of $1 trillion, Korea is the United States’ seventh largest trading partner. Similarly, the United States is Korea’s third largest trading partner, importing roughly 17 percent of Korean exports worldwide. Of the $80 billion in two-way trade in 2006, U.S. exports to Korea totaled $32.5 billion.