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NEMA Calls for Swift Congressional Approval for Three Free Trade Agreements

10/4/2011 11:00AMSign-up to receive press releases.

ROSSLYN, Va.NEMA welcomes President Barack Obama’s submission to Congress of implementing legislation for free trade agreements (FTAs) with Colombia, Panama, and South Korea, and calls for swift action from both the House of Representatives and the Senate to approve the legislation. The FTAs will provide preferential market access for U.S. exporters to three important markets and greater stability in trade relations.

“U.S. electrical and medical imaging equipment manufacturers exported over $1.4 billion worth of equipment to Colombia, Panama and South Korea combined in 2010 and all of those exports supported U.S. jobs,” said NEMA President and CEO Evan Gaddis. “Given the agreements’ provisions to eliminate customs tariffs and remove other trade barriers, Congressional approval of the FTAs with Colombia, Panama, and South Korea would foreshadow greater export opportunities for our member companies.”

“I strongly urge Congress to approve these agreements immediately,” Gaddis said.

“The U.S. market is already largely open to Panama and Colombia through economic preference programs, but our exporters face tariffs and other barriers selling there as well as in South Korea,” said Kyle Pitsor, NEMA Vice President for Government Relations. “These agreements stand to level the playing field by providing assured and preferential access for U.S. exporters to two growing markets in Latin America and strengthen our commercial ties with a leading trading partner in Asia.”

NEMA is an active member of the U.S.–Latin America Trade Coalition and the U.S.–Korea FTA Business Coalition.

NEMA is the association of electrical equipment manufacturers, founded in 1926 and headquartered in Arlington, Virginia. Its member companies manufacture a diverse set of products including power transmission and distribution equipment, lighting systems, factory automation and control systems, and medical diagnostic imaging systems. Worldwide annual sales of NEMA-scope products exceed $120 billion.

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