BeaverLake6 Report
BeaverLake6 Report

Special Report: Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement

Tick-Tock: Plotting the Passage of the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement

What's happening with the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement? I saw my good friend Paul O'Day, the President of the American Fiber Manufacturers Association, at the Textile World Innovation Forum 2015 a couple of weeks ago. He has put together a legislative "clock" to help figure out the critical calendar dates that will affect the passage (or defeat) of the agreement:

 

TPP CLOCK

* President notified Congress of intent to sign: Nov 5, 2015

* Under TPA, earliest he can sign: Feb 3, 2016

* Earliest bill can be submitted: Mar 4, 2016

* Congress has 90 legislative days to vote

* The current legislative calendar has only 85 days

* ITC study due May 18

* 26 legislative days left to mid-July summer recess

* Post-election lame duck, 16 legislative days

* If time runs out, process restarts in 2017

 

BeaverLake6 Report will keep you posted as the process goes on into 2016.

 

Steve Warner, Publisher

Posted December 14, 2015

Text of Trans-Pacific Partnership Released

The Office of the United States Trade Representative has released the full text of the Trans-Pacific Partnership agreement. According to the National Council of Textile Organizations (NCTO), the full review of the agreement will take some time but the organization believes many of the key objectives it advocated have been met, including the "yarn forward" rule of origin. Time will tell. Click here to go to the website of the Office of Trade Representative to read or download the text. We'd like to hear your thoughts on the agreement. Posted November 5, 2015 

Publisher note: The following is an update provided by the US Department of Commerce on the July 2015 Trans-Pacific Agreement negotiations that took place in Maui, Hawaii, USA.

Update on the Trans-Pacific Partnership Negotiations

Posted September 9, 2015

At the recent Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) ministerial in Maui, the 12 participant countries resolved a number of issues and built consensus for a path forward on those issues which remain unsettled. These developments will directly benefit American workers, farmers, and businesses of all sizes. Our negotiators made substantial progress on rules related to financial services, state-owned enterprises (SOEs), legal issues, and trade in industrial goods, agriculture, and textiles. Importantly, we also made substantial progress on intellectual property issues, where many previously-outstanding issues were resolved to the satisfaction of all parties after years of negotiations. We made substantial progress on market access for goods, services, investment, and government procurement. We also took significant steps toward completing an investment chapter that ensures that Americans do not face unfair discrimination when doing business abroad, while including safeguards that ensure our ability to continue to regulate in the U.S. public interest.

 

The progress made at the Ministerial meeting reflects our efforts to promote a values-based trade policy. Significant strides were made on an environment chapter that will require countries to provide critical environmental protections if they want to send their goods to the United States and will update NAFTA by putting fully-enforceable environmental obligations at the core of the agreement. We also made progress toward conclusion of groundbreaking and enforceable labor provisions that will require TPP partners to undertake specific steps to ensure that workers are accorded their most fundamental rights, as outlined by the International Labor Organization. In these and other areas in TPP, we have an opportunity to promote growth that is sustainable and inclusive.

 

Collectively, these steps are critical to “expanding the winner’s circle” by giving more Americans a fair shot in tomorrow’s global economy. By increasing U.S. exports and giving the United States a leading role in writing the rules of the road for tomorrow’s global economy, TPP will support more well-paying jobs here at home, enhance the economic prospects of middle-class American families, and strengthen U.S. national security.

 

President Obama has made clear that he will only accept an agreement that benefits middle-class families, supports jobs and opportunities, and furthers our national security interests in the region. Our negotiators’ work at the recent Ministerial meeting was focused on achieving the high bar that has been set by Congress through bipartisan Trade Promotion Authority and on delivering the ambitious, high-standard agreement that the President, Congress and the American people demand. These efforts built on prior work in a number of important areas, from e-commerce and telecommunications, to textiles, and other high-priority issues. Following last month’s productive meetings, this high-standard trade agreement is one step closer toward completion. Recognizing that in any trade negotiation, nothing is agreed to until everything is agreed to, we made significant progress at the Ministerial toward developing a package that we expect to be acceptable to all TPP countries, pending the resolution of a limited number of outstanding issues.

 

Ministers and negotiators are now in contact to formalize the progress made at the recent Ministerial meeting and find common ground toward concluding negotiations. At each step, our negotiators are guided by the ambitious objectives outlined in this report, as well as other important U.S. objectives including, but not limited to, the protection of health, safety, essential security, and consumer interests.

 

Trade in Goods

 

The United States ships nearly $2 billion in goods to TPP countries each day. In a highly competitive global marketplace, even small increases in a product’s cost due to tariffs or non-tariff barriers can mean the difference between success and failure for a business – and some of these cost increases are very large, with tariffs in TPP countries ranging up to 70 percent for American-made automobiles and even higher for some agricultural exports. That is why the United States is working to negotiate in TPP preferential access for the industrial goods, food and agriculture products, textiles, and many other products we export into the fastest-growing economies in the world.

 

At the recent Ministerial meeting, negotiators made progress toward:

 

  • Eliminating tariffs, and other duties and charges on trade between each TPP country and the United States on the broadest possible basis, taking into account the need to obtain competitive opportunities for U.S. exports while addressing U.S. import sensitivities;
     
  • Eliminating non-tariff barriers to U.S. exports, including permit and licensing barriers on agricultural and other products, restrictive administration of tariff-rate quotas, unjustified trade restrictions that affect new U.S. technologies, including biotechnology, and other trade restrictive measures;
     
  • Disciplining state trading enterprises, state-owned enterprises and designated monopolies, as appropriate, to enhance transparency and eliminate market distortions;
     
  • Reaffirming WTO commitments on sanitary and phytosanitary (SPS) measures and avoiding any SPS restrictions that are not based on science;
     
  • Reaffirming WTO commitments on technical barriers to trade (TBT) and avoiding any unjustified TBT measures;
     
  • Obtaining fully reciprocal access to TPP country markets and more open conditions of trade for U.S. textile and apparel products; and
     
  • Ensuring that no commitments would require changes to U.S. antidumping and countervailing duty laws and practices or diminish the U.S. ability to effectively enforce those laws.

 

Custom Matters, Rules of Origin, and Enforcement Cooperation

 

Cutting the red-tape of trade, including by reducing costs and increasing customs efficiencies, will make it cheaper, easier, and faster for businesses to get their products to market. In TPP, we are looking to facilitate trade across the TPP region; support the deep integration of U.S. logistics, manufacturing, and other industries in regional supply chains; and reduce costs for U.S. business by removing onerous and opaque customs barriers.

 

At the recent Ministerial meeting, negotiators made progress toward:

 

  • Establishing rules of origin, procedures for applying these rules, and provisions to address circumvention that ensure that preferential duty rates under the TPP Agreement apply only to goods eligible to receive such treatment, without creating unnecessary obstacles to trade; and
     
  • Securing terms for cooperative efforts with the TPP countries regarding enforcement of customs rules and related issues, including in the areas of trade in textiles and apparel and agricultural products of concern.
     

Trade in Services

 

Services industries account for four out of five U.S. jobs in the U.S., which is by far the world’s largest services exporter and maintains a services-trade surplus of $233 billion as of 2014.  Securing liberalized and fair access to foreign services markets will help U.S. service suppliers, both small and large, to do business in TPP markets – increasing revenues and supporting jobs at home.

 

At the recent Ministerial meeting, negotiators made progress toward:

 

  • Expanding market opportunities for U.S. services, as well as reducing barriers to international trade in services;
     
  • Securing commitments from TPP countries to improve transparency and predictability in their respective regulatory procedures, specialized disciplines for financial services, and additional disciplines for telecommunications and other sectors; and
     
  • Pursuing a comprehensive approach to market access, including improvements in access to the telecommunications and financial services sectors, as well as addressing the operation of any designated monopolies or state enterprises related to services or investment.
     

Investment

 

With trade following investment, we are working to ensure that Americans doing business abroad are provided the same kind of opportunities in other markets that U.S. policy affords to domestic and foreign investors doing business within our borders. That is why we are seeking to include in TPP many of the investment obligations that have historically helped to support jobs and economic growth, as well as new provisions to take on emerging investment issues, while also including safeguards to ensure full rights to regulate in the public interest.

 

At the recent Ministerial meeting, negotiators made progress toward:

 

  • Establishing rules that reduce or eliminate artificial or trade-distorting barriers to U.S. investment in TPP countries;
     
  • Securing for U.S. investors in TPP countries important rights comparable to those that would be available under U.S. legal principles and practices, while ensuring that TPP country investors in the United States are not accorded greater substantive rights with respect to investment protections than U.S. investors in the United States;
     
  • Ensuring that U.S. investors receive treatment as favorable as that accorded to domestic or other foreign investors in TPP countries and addressing unjustified barriers to the establishment and operation of U.S. investments in TPP countries; and
     
  • Providing and maintaining procedures to resolve disputes between U.S. investors and the TPP countries that are in keeping with the goals of expeditious, fair, and transparent dispute settlement.

 

Digital Trade in Goods and Services and Cross-Border Data Flows

 

In the past five years, the number of Internet users worldwide has ballooned from two to three billion, and this number will continue to grow. The increase in Internet use creates significant economic potential, particularly for small businesses. The Obama Administration is working through TPP to ensure competitive access for Internet and telecommunications companies, and the huge swathe of the economy that relies on their services.  As the first trade agreement to address these issues in a comprehensive way, TPP will set digital trade rules-of-the-road, and is crucial to preserving the benefits of an open, global Internet for the future.

 

At the recent Ministerial meeting, negotiators made progress toward:

 

  • Establishing requirements that support a single, global Internet, including ensuring cross-border data flows, consistent with governments’ legitimate interest in protecting privacy;
     
  • Establishing rules against localization requirements that force businesses to place computer infrastructure in each market in which they seek to operate, rather than allowing them to offer services from network centers that make business sense; and
     
  • Securing commitments to provide reasonable network access for telecommunications suppliers through interconnection and access to physical facilities.
     

Intellectual Property

 

Strong and effective protection and enforcement of IP rights is critical to U.S. economic growth and American jobs.  Nearly 40 million American jobs are directly or indirectly attributable to “IP-intensive” industries. These jobs pay higher wages to their workers, and these industries drive approximately 60 percent of U.S. merchandise exports and a large share of services exports. In TPP, we are working to advance strong, state-of-the-art, and balanced rules that will protect and promote U.S. exports of IP-intensive products and services throughout the Asia-Pacific region for the benefit of producers and consumers of those goods and services in all TPP countries. 

 

At the recent Ministerial meeting, negotiators made progress toward:

 

  • Establishing standards to be applied in TPP countries that build on the foundations established in the WTO Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights and other international intellectual property agreements, such as the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) Copyright Treaty, the WIPO Performances and Phonograms Treaty, and the Patent Cooperation Treaty;
     
  • Securing fair, equitable, and nondiscriminatory market access opportunities for U.S. persons that rely on intellectual property protection;
     
  • Establishing strong protections for patents, trademarks, copyrights, and trade secrets, including safeguards against cyber theft of trade secrets;
     
  • Securing strong and fair enforcement rules to protect against trademark counterfeiting and copyright piracy, including rules allowing increased penalties in cases where counterfeit or pirated goods threaten consumer health or safety; and
     
  • Providing strong protection for new and emerging technologies and new methods of transmitting and distributing products embodying intellectual property, including in a manner that facilitates legitimate digital trade
     
  • Securing pharmaceutical IP provisions that promote innovation and the development of new, lifesaving medicines, create opportunities for robust generic drug competition, and ensure affordable access to medicines, taking into account levels of development among the TPP countries and their existing laws and international commitments;
     
  • Rules that promote transparency and due process with respect to trademarks and geographical indications;
     

Government Procurement

 

Increasing access to government procurement markets in TPP countries, which represent an estimated 10-15 percent of many countries’ economies, will unlock significant opportunities for U.S. businesses and workers.  At the same time, we intend TPP to be consistent with past agreements in preserving U.S. rights to maintain such policies as Buy American requirements and small business and other set-asides, as well as state and local procurement rights.

 

At the recent Ministerial meeting, negotiators made progress toward:

 

  • Expanding market access opportunities for U.S. goods, services, and suppliers of goods and services in the government procurement markets of the TPP countries.

 

Competition and State-Owned Enterprises (SOEs)

 

U.S. goals on competition policy and SOEs are grounded in long-standing principles of fair competition, consumer protection, and transparency.  The United States is seeking rules to prohibit anticompetitive business conduct, as well as fraudulent and deceptive commercial activities that harm consumers.  We are also pursuing pioneering rules to ensure that private sector businesses and workers are able to compete on fair terms with SOEs, especially when such SOEs receive significant government backing to engage in commercial activity.

 

At the recent ministerial meeting, negotiators made progress toward:

 

  • Establishing new and enforceable rules to ensure commercial SOEs do not cause harm to competitors as a result of subsidies or other advantages they receive from government owners or other SOEs; and
     
  • Establishing new and enforceable rules to ensure that commercial SOEs operate on the basis of commercial considerations and do not discriminate against U.S. goods and services in their commercial purchases or sales.

 

Labor

 

Ensuring respect for worker rights around the world is both a core value and a key to leveling the playing field for American workers and businesses. In TPP, the United States is seeking enforceable rules that protect the rights of freedom of association and collective bargaining; discourage trade in goods produced by forced labor, including forced child labor; establish mechanisms to monitor and address labor concerns; help to ensure acceptable conditions of work, in areas such as minimum wages and workplace health and safety; and upgrade NAFTA to ensure that enforceable labor standards are fully part of our trade relationships with Canada and Mexico.

 

At the recent Ministerial meeting, negotiators made progress toward:

 

  • Obtaining appropriate and enforceable commitments from each TPP country with respect to internationally recognized labor rights, including child labor rights, and effectively enforcing their respective labor laws concerning those rights; and
     
  • Establishing procedures for consultations and cooperative activities to strengthen the capacity to TPP countries, as appropriate, to promote respect for internationally recognized labor rights, including the principles embodied in the ILO Declaration on Fundamental Principles and Rights at Work and ILO Convention 182 on the Worst Forms of Child Labor.
     

Environment

 

Advancing environmental protection and conservation efforts across the Asia-Pacific region is a key priority for the United States in TPP, both as a core value and as a key to leveling the playing field for American workers and businesses.  In TPP, we are seeking strong and enforceable rules to protect the environment and require enforcement of domestic environmental laws; trailblazing, first-ever conservation proposals to address some of the region’s most urgent environmental challenges, such as wildlife trafficking, illegal logging, and overfishing; the first agreement to reduce fishery subsidies; and rules ensuring transparency and public participation.

 

At the recent Ministerial meeting, negotiators made progress toward:

 

  • Obtaining appropriate and enforceable commitments from each TPP country to effectively enforce their environmental laws and undertake implementation of specific multilateral environmental agreements; and
     
  • Encouraging conservation and obtaining commitments to help reduce threats to sustainable development, including the use of sustainable fisheries management systems and sustainable forest management.
     

Transparency, Anti-Corruption, and Regulatory Coherence

 

Through TPP, we are seeking to make trade across the TPP region more seamless, including by improving the coherence of TPP regulatory systems, enhancing transparency in policy-making processes, and combatting corruption.  These “good government” reforms also play an important role in ensuring fairness for American workers and small businesses.

 

At the recent ministerial meeting, negotiators made progress toward:

 

  • Securing commitments to make each TPP country’s administration of its trade and investment regime more transparent and pursuing rules that will permit timely and meaningful public comment before a TPP country adopts trade and investment-related measures.
     

Dispute Settlement 

 

We expect our TPP partners to abide by the rules and obligations within the agreement.  If disputes arise with respect to compliance, the Parties have recourse to an independent tribunal to determine whether a Party has failed to meet its obligations, and ultimately to allow suspension of benefits of the trade agreement if a Party fails to come into compliance.  Through the TPP dispute settlement mechanism, we are seeking to give the American public the confidence that the United States has the means to enforce the strong, high-standard obligations we aim to secure through this agreement.

 

At the recent Ministerial meeting, negotiators made progress toward:

 

  • Establishing provisions that treat all disciplines in the Agreement equally with respect to access to the dispute settlement provisions of the agreement, including with respect to remedies;
     
  • Establishing fair, transparent, timely, and effective procedures to settle disputes arising under the TPP; and
     
  • Establishing penalties on parties that encourage compliance and are appropriate in nature, subject matter, and scope to the violation.
     

Development and Capacity Building

 

The United States views development as a way to further strengthen the region and lay the groundwork for future economic opportunities by improving access to economic opportunity for women and low income individuals; incentivizing private-public partnerships in development activities; and designing sustainable models for economic growth. In addition, the United States sees trade capacity-building as critical to assist TPP developing countries such as Vietnam, Peru, Brunei, and others, in implementing the agreement and ensuring they can benefit from it. In TPP, we plan to include a chapter on cooperation and capacity building, and for the first time in any U.S. trade agreement a chapter dedicated specifically to development. 

 

At the recent Ministerial meeting, negotiators made progress toward:

 

  • Promoting capacity building and assistance by the United States and other developed TPP countries in order to aid developing TPP countries with implementation of trade commitments and obligations.

USTR Ambassador Michael Froman on Trade Agreements Being Negotiated. On March 26, United States Trade Representative Michael Froman addressed the National Council of Textile Organizations (NCTO) at its annual meeting in Washington, D.C. The following are his prepared remarks for his talk. You may also view the prepared talk online on the USTR website by clicking here. At the very beginning of his presentation he acknowledges Jay Self, Chairman of the NCTO.

 

Remarks by Ambassador Michael Froman to the National Council of Textile Organizations

 

Washington, D.C.

March 26, 2015

 

Thank you, Jay. It’s a pleasure to be here, at an important moment for our nation’s economy and for American manufacturing in particular. I see that the theme of this meeting is “resurgence.” That could well be the theme for this Administration’s economic policy as well.

 

Consider the progress we’ve made together in recent years:

 

• Six years ago, we were losing 700,000 jobs a month and unemployment touched 10%. Now, for the Örst time in 37 years, U.S. businesses have added more than 200,000 jobs per month for 12 months, and unemployment has dipped to 5.5%.

 

• Between 2000 and 2010, we lost roughly 50,000 jobs a month in manufacturing. In the last Öve years, we’ve seen a gain of almost 900,000 new manufacturing jobs.

 

• After nearly two decades in decline, factories are opening in this country again, and manufacturing jobs are starting to return from overseas.

 

If you could put a label on this comeback, it would read “Made-in-America.” That’s because U.S. exports have contributed nearly one third of our overall economic growth since 2009. Last year, 11.7 million American jobs were supported by exports, an increase of 1.8 million since 2009. After remaining stagnant for far too long, average wages are finally starting to rise, and we know that jobs related to exports pay up to 18% more, on average, than jobs not related to exports.

 

Our record-setting exports include strong performances from across the economy – from agriculture, services and manufacturing, including the textile industry. After a decade of decline in U.S. manufacturing during the 2000s, the American textile industry has seen more jobs and increased shipments over the last 6 years, including a 45% increase in exports. Thanks to all your hard work, the United States remains the world’s third largest textile exporter.

 

Like the broader manufacturing sector of which it is a critical part, we’re making sure America’s textile industry succeeds because a strong American textile industry means more good jobs and innovation. The textile industry is an important component of our manufacturing base, employing more than 230,000 Americans directly, including many in rural communities, and supporting many more indirectly across the country.

Our textile industry is also at the forefront of some of the very latest in global technology. You’re producing cutting edge products, from carbon fibers to advanced and composite materials. And this leadership, combined with quality and dependability, has also made our textile industry an important supplier for home, technical, apparel and industrial uses – not to mention the U.S. military.

 

For all these reasons, this administration has been working closely with textile workers and businesses to build on the solid foundation that has been laid in recent years. Just last week, President Obama launched a competition for a “Revolutionary Fibers and Textiles Manufacturing Innovation Institute.” This effort seeks to keep the United States at the leading edge of fiber science, and it’s backed by $75 million in public investment and at least that much in additional private investment.

 

So our commitment to the future of American textiles is stronger than ever. And that’s true in our trade policy as well, which is a key pillar of President Obama’s overall economic strategy and a key part of our investment policy and our manufacturing policy. They work hand-in-hand to create jobs, promote growth, and strengthen the middle class in America. We’re using our trade tools on all fronts to support America’s textile workers and businesses. The first aspect of that work is aggressive enforcement of our existing trade agreements. By making enforcement a top priority, this administration has vigilantly held our trading partners to live up to and account for their obligations.

 

The logic behind aggressive enforcement is simple. Our workers and businesses are among the most productive in the world, so we know that when the playing field is level, when everyone plays by the rules, Americans don’t just compete, they win.

 

That’s why we’ve been standing up for American workers, families, farmers, and businesses across the economy. We’ve filed nearly 20 complaints through the World Trade Organization since 2009, and we’ve won every case that has been decided so far. Over the last year alone, the United States has won four major victories affecting billions of dollars of U.S. exports, including cases against China, India, and Argentina.

 

We’ve consistently stood up for America’s textile industry, most recently by initiating a new WTO dispute against China. Through close monitoring, we discovered that China appears to be using its “Demonstration Bases” and “Common Service Platforms” to provide domestic producers with free or discounted services contingent on exporting.

These unfair practices are against WTO rules, and they threaten American textile exports and the good jobs those exports support. At an even more fundamental level, illegal trade activity by any country undermines the rules-based global trading system that we’ve led for over seven decades. That system has brought jobs to our shores, allies and partners to our defense, and peace and prosperity to those around the world who have embraced openness and fairness.

 

It is very much in our interest—in terms of jobs, growth, and the strength of our middle class—to ensure that everyone in that system plays by the rules.

 

At the same time, we know from experience that we need to do more than rigorously enforce the existing rules. We need to be pressing our trading partners to adopt higher standards that re×ect the realities of today’s global economy. We need to be leading on trade so that our workers and businesses will positioned to benefit from tomorrow’s global economy.

That’s why we’re moving forward with the Trans-Pacific Partnership, or TPP, which is a truly ground breaking agreement. TPP will cover nearly 40% of the global economy, and it is estimated to grow our exports by more than $123 billion by 2025, according to one study, and support many more high-paying jobs.

 

Just as importantly, TPP gives us the opportunity to protect workers, to protect the environment, and to tackle a number of issues that have never been addressed:

 

• TPP will include the highest and most enforceable labor and environmental standards

of any trade agreement.

 

• TPP – for the first time in any trade agreement – will put disciplines on state-owned enterprises and ensure a free and open Internet.

 

• TPP will ensure that the 40 million Americans whose jobs are directly or indirectly dependent on innovation, invention and creativity enjoy the fruits of their labor – from the inventor in her garage to the pioneers who are producing the next generation of technical textiles.

 

Across the board, TPP will help restore the connection between hard work and rightful reward by giving Americans a fair shot in these markets, including America’s textile industry.

 

That’s because USTR and NCTO have worked together, forging a partnership and putting into practice a new model for cooperation.

 

The finish line for TPP would not be in sight today if not for the partnership that we’ve cultivated here at home during the past few years.

 

In practice, our partnership has entailed a step-by-step, very deliberative process to identify the most important domestic sensitive interests, decide how to treat them in this agreement, and construct a framework for progressively less sensitive items.

The level of engagement and collaboration between USTR and NCTO has been unprecedented. We began the TPP process with different ideas about what an acceptable market access package would entail, but rather than parting ways there, we listened to each other’s concerns, we charted a common course forward, and corrected that course as necessary.

 

You completed a comprehensive analysis that simulated impacts from certain market openings, and we’ve adjusted our negotiating approach to carefully incorporate that analysis. We’ve also cooperated very closely in developing a short supply list that balances the offensive and defensive interests of the United States, encourages regional integration of TPP textile and apparel markets, enhances supply chains in the region, and creates new business opportunities for U.S. exporters.

 

The result is that we’re close to delivering a balanced package that we can all be proud of, one that will support supply chains in the Western Hemisphere and put America’s textile industry on a path to becoming even stronger. Like any compromise, this one will require that everyone gives a bit in the short term in order to secure some even larger gains in the medium term. At the same time, this package takes into account special concerns related to your core products, and it will establish a pace that will provide time for investment decisions to enhance your competitive position.

 

As with any negotiation, there will be odds and ends that won’t be closed until the very end. But let me assure you that there won’t be any surprises. We do not expect significant changes to the existing parameters and structure of the deal being considered, and any further modifications to the package will be based on consultations with NCTO leadership, just as we have been doing throughout this negotiation. I want to thank Auggie and the NCTO leadership for investing the time and energy to working with us over the last couple of years to find the right approach on these challenging issues. We appreciate their commitment and their creativity.

 

Now, let me say just a few words about the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership, or T-TIP, because TPP and T-TIP are two parts of the same overall strategy for attracting more jobs and investment to the United States.

 

As you’re aware, our textile and apparel relationship with the European Union is considerable in its size and scope. Through T-TIP, we’re seeking to obtain fully reciprocal access to the EU market for U.S. textile and apparel products, supported by effective and efficient customs cooperation and other rules to facilitate U.S.-EU trade in textiles and apparel. More specifically, we believe that agreement on trade rules, market access, and cooperation and coordination on non-tariff barriers are principal components of successful free trade agreements, and these commitments are closely linked to each other.

 

A number of specific issues have been raised about opportunities in T-TIP to address non-tariff barriers. In the textile and apparel sector, these include labelling requirements, product safety and consumer protection requirements, and test methods. And we’re open to exploring whether T-TIP presents opportunities to explore future cooperation in these areas.

 

Now, when TPP and T-TIP are concluded, the U.S. will be at the center of a web of agreements that will give us unfettered access to nearly two-thirds of the global economy. And that will help us position America to become the world’s production platform of choice – the premier place for making things and selling them around the world. More businesses will want to move their operations to the U.S.

to take advantage of our talented workforce, our abundant and affordable energy, our dependable legal system, and all the other things that make the U.S. market great.

As I mentioned at the outset, we’re at an important moment of “resurgence” for our nation’s economy and for American manufacturing in particular. We’ve come back from the Great Recession, and we’ve got some momentum. Jobs are coming back from overseas to communities around the country.

 

Communities like Hildebran, North Carolina, where plans were recently announced for a state-of-the-art facility that will make legwear for sale all over the world. That facility will create more than 200 new jobs, and those jobs will pay $4,000 a year more than the North Carolina average, according to the North Carolina Department of Commerce.

Stories like these are evident across the country. But to fully deliver on the promise of resurgence, we’ll need to continue leading on trade – not just by aggressively enforcing our existing agreements but also by negotiating tough new ones like TPP.

 

Because even though more American businesses are exporting than ever before, more than 95 percent of all American businesses still don’t export at all. That means 95 percent of our businesses are missing out on 95 percent of the world’s customers.

The first step toward unlocking that incredible opportunity is passing trade promotion authority, or TPA. Trade promotion legislation is the way Congress gives direction to the President about what to negotiate, how to consult with Congress before and during the negotiations and how Congress will decide at the end of the day – after an extensive public debate – whether to support or reject a trade agreement. It’s how Congress has worked with American Presidents since FDR, including every President—Republican and Democrat—for the last four decades, to ensure that the United States takes the lead in shaping the global trading system.

 

And yet TPA hasn’t been updated since 2002. Think about how much the global economy, and the textile industry, has changed since then. Consider the rise of emerging markets and state owned enterprises. Or consider the growing importance of e-commerce in making suppliers more responsive to consumer trends.

 

Updating TPA should be a natural choice for the textile industry, which has been at the forefront of adjusting to an increasingly competitive global economy. Going back to the 1980’s, your industry started looking ahead to design our trade agreements and trade programs in ways that were mutually supportive to the United States and our partner countries, including developing countries.

 

We have a similar opportunity within reach today. By updating TPA and closing an ambitious TPP agreement, we can support more jobs here in the United States and maintain our textile industry’s competitive edge for years to come.

I can promise you that we’ll continue fighting for your interests in our negotiations, and that we’ll continue seeking your input at every stage of the process. But we can’t do this alone. We’ll need your strong support to close the deal that’s best for you.

As industry leaders, you’re among the most influential and respected voices in your local communities, states, and here in Washington.

 

People will be looking to you for guidance in the coming weeks and months, and we need you to speak out, loudly and clearly, in favor of TPA. The partnership that we’ve forged depends on it. That partnership represents a new paradigm for cooperation between USTR and industry, and it’s one that will become increasingly important in as we continue our work together and prove to others that it’s a model worth replicating elsewhere.

 

With that common goal in mind, let me thank you again for having me here today. I’m happy to take your questions.

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Coming Events

  • October 22-23: 32nd Annual Meeting of American Flock Association, Novi, Mich., USA

  • October 24-26: Automotive Interiors Expo 2017, Novi, Mich., USA

  • October 24-27: Intermediate Nonwovens Training Course, Cary and Raleigh, N.C., USA

  • October 25-26: Nonwovens Innovation Academy, Chemnitz, Germany

  • October 26-27: SYFA 2017 Fall Conference, Charlotte, N.C., USA

  • October 29-31: Graphene Innovation Summit & Expo, Nashville, Tenn., USA

  • November 6: German Technology Meets US Textile, Charlotte, N.C., USA

  • November 6-9: 3rd Annual HYGIENIX Conference, Austin, Texas, USA

  • November 7-9: SPESA Executive Conference, Memphis, Tenn., USA

  • November 7-8: 2017 RISI Asia Pacifice Hygiene Products Symposium, Shanghai, China

  • November 8-9: TCL 2017 (Textile Coating and Laminnating Conference), Berlin, Germany

  • November 8-10: SINCE 2017 (Shanghai International Nonwovens Conference & Exhibition), Shanghai, China 

Click here to view the complete technical textiles events calendar that includes show information links.

Is Saving the US Navy's Peacoat a Matter of National Security?

Since last August, the US Navy has been planning to phase out its iconic traditional wool peacoat in favor of a less expensive, synthetic cold weather parka which is lighter in weight and more versatile in types of inclement weather. It actually replaces two types of coats and the seabag the wool coat is stored.

 

The wool coat, however, has some powerful friends in the US Congress. Companies such as Northwest Woolen Mills in Woonsocket, R.I. and Sterlingware in Boston, Mass. Altogether, the supply chain involved in the manufacture of these woolen peacoats -- including sheep farmers -- is estimated to account for 400 jobs in the Northeast. Add to the drama that the new parka, made by the long-time military supplier Propper, is expected to be manufactured in Puerto Rico, a perceived feeling the new coat will be made by non-American workers. Read more...

 

Steve Warner

Publisher

June 29. 2017

President Trump's Reveals 2017 Trade Policy Agenda

The Office of the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) has released President Trump's 2017 Trade Policy Agenda. The document, officially called 2017 Trade Policy Agenda and 2016 Annual Report of the President of the United States on the Trade Agreements Program, outlines the new Administration’s four trade priorities:

  • Defending the US National Sovereignty over Trade Policy
  • Strictly Enforcing US Trade Laws
  • Using Leverage to Open Foreign Markets
  • Negotiating New and Better Trade Deals

​BeaverLake6 Report has created a special page within this website and placed the first chapter of the 336-page document which summarizes the policy. Click here to read it. Posted March 2, 2017

What's the NCTO Game Plan for the Post-TPP Era?

Back on March 24, 2016, I was one of the first to predict the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement was a dead deal. In fact, I said that I wouldn’t be surprised that, if Donald Trump became President, the agreement is shredded on day one of his new administration. Well, I was off by three days. Yesterday, President Trump signed an Executive Order, officially withdrawing the United States from the TPP agreement. Now the question is can the National Council of Textile Organizations put together a comprehensive plan for the domestic textile industry in a post-TPP era? Click here to read the rest. Posted January 25, 2017

Steady Growth Prospects for Expanding Specialty Geosynthetics

There are literally dozens of market reports for the many market sections and subsections within the technical textiles industry. In 2017, BeaverLake6 Report will be introducing a few of these reports to our viewers. The first report being features is The Future of Spcialty Geosynthetics to 2021. It was developed by Smithers Apex, a market research firm based in the United Kingdom. 

 

In exchange for the promotion, Smithers Apex agreed to write an exclusive expanded executive summary of the market report for our readers. Click here to view the market summary. Posted January 9, 2017

2016 China Textile Innovation Conference Explores the Roads to a Textile Power

Sun Ruizhe

2016 China Textile Innovation Conference, as an annual summit of industry innovation, was held in Beijing on December 12th, 2016. The conference, themed on “New Opportunity, New Advantages, New Vitality” – Stepping Towards a Textile Power, comprehensively summarized the industry innovation achievements and explored the new advantages in development in order to grasp the strategic opportunity of the new round of industrial changes. BeaverLake6 Report is pleased to present a report on the conference via our partnership with China Textile magazine. Please click here. Posted December 21, 2016

In My Opinion

Re-Shoring: Good for the Goose is Not Good for the Gander?

Domestic PFD Manufacturer's Application for FTZ Additional Production Authority Riles Textile Industry Trade Associations. There is a nasty fight taking place these past few months behind the closed doors of Room 48019 at the Herbert C. Hoover Building in Washington, D.C. The room is the office of the Foreign-Trade Zones Board. The fight pits domestic technical textile industry suppliers and a coalition of textile-trade associations against a fairly large domestic end-product cut-and-sew manufacturer. Click here to read the story.

 

Steve Warner

Publisher

Media Partners

In My Opinion

In 2015, I posted more than 425 items of interest for our industry on the BeaverLake6 Report website. In reviewing it all last week, it got me to thinking about putting together a list of influential events, news and trends that I observed during the past year. I have focused primarily on the US marketplace but each of “the things that mattered” to me has global implications.

 

So, here go my thoughts in no particular order of importance. Let me know if you agree or if I have missed some. Click here to read the list.

 

Steve Warner

Publisher

Posted January 17, 2016

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Ron Gottlieb  

  Director

  Ricky Richards (Sales) Pty Ltd.

 

Read more testimonials by clicking here.

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Secretary Gary Locke, US Dept. of Commerce, and Steve Warner Commerce Secretary Gary Locke and Steve Warner

Success in our industry is all about knowledge, integrity and developing relationships. BeaverLake6 Group, LLC, publisher of BeaverLake6 Report, is a management consulting firm focused on helping businesses understand the complex global technical textiles industry.

 

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