Original Press Release
NAM Commends Congress on Renewal of Andean and GSP Trade Programs
Press release date: October 3, 2008
Business Concerns Over Ecuador and Bolivia Included in Final Bill WASHINGTON, D.C., October 3, 2008 - The National Association of Manufacturer commends Congress for renewing trade preferences for Andean nations as well as the Generalized System of Preferences Program (GSP) for more than 130 developing nations. The Senate passed the legislation on Thursday and the House of Representatives passed it earlier today.
"Unilaterally lowering our tariffs on products from developing nations through GSP, and to strong allies like Colombia and Peru, is something that is not done lightly," said Doug Goudie, Director of International Trade Policy for NAM. "It is a choice we make because we believe in the developmental power of trade and the strong, positive influence trade can have on decreasing poverty and boosting economic growth."
The NAM congratulates Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus (D-MT), Ranking Member Charles Grassley (R-IA), House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Charles Rangel (D-NY) and Ranking Member Jim McCrery (R-LA) on their effort to reach a deal to extend the Andean Trade Preferences Act by a year.
"This sends the strong statement that the United States recognizes the importance of our trade with our allies in the Andean region, and hopefully demonstrates to Colombia that our pending free trade agreement has not been forgotten," Goudie said.
At the same time, the 6-month extension of Andean benefits to Bolivia and Ecuador includes review language that helps alleviate the NAM's concern over the mistreatment of American investments and companies.
"These preferences are extended as an important tool of economic development, and the United States is correct to register its concern in this renewal of preferences," noted Goudie. "We believe this is a very positive step to renew the preferences for these two nations - and the additional certification requirement in this renewal serves notice that these benefits can be withdrawn if due cause is found." The National Association of Manufacturers is the nation's largest industrial trade association, representing small and large manufacturers in every industrial sector and in all 50 states. Headquartered in Washington, D.C., the NAM has 11 additional offices across the country. Visit the NAM's award-winning web site at www.nam.org for more information about manufacturing and the economy. CONTACT:
GREG WRIGHT (202) 637-3084