New U.S. Trade Enforcement Center to Ensure Level Playing Field
By Jane Morse
Washington - The Obama administration is strengthening its efforts to enforce U.S. trade rights under international trade agreements.
President Obama signed an executive order February 28 establishing the Interagency Trade Enforcement Center under the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative that will marshal the resources of various federal agencies in a coordinated effort to monitor and enforce U.S. trade rights and thereby enhance market access for U.S. exporters.
The departments of State, Treasury, Justice, Agriculture, Commerce and Homeland Security, as well as the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, will be enlisted in the effort, as will other government agencies as needed. Their job will be to identify, reduce or eliminate foreign trade barriers and unfair foreign trade practices, the executive order says. The goal is to expand exports and ensure that U.S. workers, businesses, ranchers and farmers are able to compete with foreign trade partners.
In a statement released the same day, U.S. Commerce Secretary John Bryson said the creation of the Interagency Trade Enforcement Center is "a major step toward leveling the playing field for American workers and businesses," and that the Commerce Department "is committed to making it as easy as possible for U.S. businesses to build things here and sell them everywhere."
"We know that when American businesses and workers get a fair shot, they can compete and win," Bryson said.
A statement released by the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative said the new center will also encourage U.S. workers and businesses to participate in the center's work to reduce unfair trade practices and barriers.
(This is a product of the Bureau of International Information Programs, U.S. Department of State.)