U.S., Peru Sign Trade Promotion Agreement
Last week, U.S. Trade Representative Rob Portman and Peruvian Minister of Foreign Trade and Tourism Alfredo Ferrero Diez Canseco signed the U.S.-Peru Trade Promotion Agreement, which will allow U.S. dairy exports to receive increased duty-free access to the Andean nation. The new trade pact also will allow Peru to export an additional 11,000 metric tons of sugar into the U.S. market.
In 2005, U.S. dairy exports to Peru totaled $4 million. Although the region is not a top dairy export market, IDFA supports free-trade agreements as tools to liberalize dairy and sugar commerce. Total trade between the United States and Peru last year reached $7.4 billion.
The agreement now must be approved by both the U.S. and Peruvian legislatures. Peruvian President Alejandro Toledo, who steps down in July, said he hopes Peru's next president will take advantage of the free-trade pact. The two leading presidential candidates, however, have expressed opposition to an agreement with the United States.
U.S. approval may hit obstacles as well. Some top-ranking Democrats on the House Ways and Means Committee have expressed disappointment with the labor provisions included in the agreement. In an effort to create bipartisan support, Ambassador Portman has met with key Democrats to discuss the benefits of the agreement and encourage their endorsement.
For information about the agreement, click here or contact Helen Medina at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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Posted April 17, 2006