TTIP Action | May 19

House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Paul Ryan on CNN’s State of the Union with Brianna Keilar

Speeches & Official Announcements

Ryan on State of the Union: For ‘More Jobs and Better Wages,’ We Need Trade

“The other part is there’s going to be 3.2 billion people in the middle class by Asia by the year 2030. It’s an enormous market for America. And if we want more jobs and better wages, you have to trade.” – Chairman Paul Ryan

On Sunday, House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Paul Ryan appeared on CNN’s State of the Union to discuss the importance of TPA legislation currently being considered by Congress. During their conversation, Chairman Ryan explained why new trade agreements are so vital to the American economy and why it is essential for Congress to pass TPA as soon as possible, in order to ensure that the best trade agreements are passed, both for American workers and for job creators. (Committee on Ways and Means)

For the full interview, click here.

Secretary Kerry To Deliver Remarks on the Trans-Pacific Partnership at Boeing’s Headquarters in Washington State

US Secretary of State John Kerry will visit the Seattle area today to deliver a speech touching upon strategic and economic importance of trade. He will cover topics such as the importance of open markets, high standards, and a rules-based economic partnership with the Asia-Pacific region. Secretary Kerry will speak about the importance of TPP to support the American economy and job creation, expanding American access to the fastest growing and most dynamic region on the planet. (US Department of State)

National Review: Yes to Trade Promotion Authority

“That free trade is generally good for the country does not mean, of course, that every proposed trade pact is desirable. With TPA, Republicans can kill a bad deal; without it, they have effectively no chance of endorsing a good one.”

The editors at National Review argue that TPA ought to be uncontroversial, as it ensures that a proposed trade accord gets a vote rather than a death by a thousand cuts. As Democrats are generally hostile to such liberalizing measures such as TPP or TTIP, President Obama must make this deal not only appealing to Republicans, but worth enough for them to fight for. (Committee on Ways and Means)


Senate Reversal Opens Debate on Key Trade Bill

Last Thursday, the Senate voted to start debate to ‘fast-track’ TPP, overcoming opposition from Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid. They will now begin considering TPA, which would allow the president to submit TPP to Congress for a straight up-or-down vote without any amendments. (Politico)

Some Administration Officials Defend Trade Pact as National Security Policy

The White House has argued that not finalizing TTP would leave a vacuum that China would rush to fill, setting its own presumably lower standards in the region. However, arguments for TPP have taken a turn towards national security, with Defense Secretary Ashton Carter stated that President Obama’s Pacific trade deal was as important to the military as the new aircraft carrier, and Michèle Flournoy noting that America’s prestige and continued influence throughout the region is on the line with this trade deal. (Washington Post)

TTIP Action Partner

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Recent Analysis

The Strategic Imperative of TTIP

TTIP has the potential to contribute to strategic unity across the Atlantic, former Czech defense minister Jiri Seivy notes – and this objective is as important now as it has ever been. TTIP has the potential to boost innovation and economic growth while increasing its member countries’ geopolitical weight and power. It is crucial that technical objections and protectionist instincts not be allowed to eclipse the project’s geopolitical importance. (Project Syndicate)

Delaying TPA Threatens Rural Economy

US Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack argues that Congress is threatening the future of American agriculture and the rural way of life by delaying action on TPA legislation. Without TPA, American agriculture will cede momentum and leadership on the world stage, taking power out of the hands of American farmers and putting it into the hands of our foreign competitors. (Huffington Post)

B|Visual: Trade Facts and Figures: Potential in All Directions

The Bertlesmann Foundation published an infographic highlighting the numerous benefits to free trade, including higher-paid export-related jobs and the amount of US jobs dependent on international trade. Among its numerous benefits, TTIP could create 740,000 trade-related American jobs and increase the stock of FDI by an estimated $173 billion. (Bertelsmann Foundation)

McConnell: Expanding Free Trade Will Grow Kentucky Exports

Senator Mitch McConnell (R, KY) strongly states his support for TPA, which could help lead to the completion and eventual enactment of trade agreements aimed at lowering trade barriers. More than half a million jobs in Kentucky are related to international trade, and passing FTAs would eliminate unfair rules in other countries that discriminate against American workers and American products. (Courier-Journal)

Free Trade Is Not the Enemy

William Daley, former White House Chief of Staff to President Obama and US Secretary of Commerce under President Clinton, notes that America is currently making the mistake of underestimating what defeat the Asia-Pacific deal would mean economically, globally, and politically. While acknowledging that NAFTA’s shadow hangs over this deal, Mr. Daley notes that America now has a chance to guide a huge section of the world’s economy to reflect US high standards for commerce. (New York Times)

In Defense of NAFTA

The Editors at BloombergView note that while many oppose NAFTA, they forget a few things. Not only has trade among the three countries involved jumped 300 percent to $1.2 trillion, but NAFTA has helped make US companies more efficient, competitive, and profitable. GDP per capita has also raised significantly since the deal was signed. While trade creates losers and winners, the goal should be to help losers adjust – suppressing trade is not the answer. (Bloomberg View)

Upcoming Events

TTIP and Health Stakeholder Meeting – May 27 in Brussels, hosted by the European Commission – More Information

The Digital Single Market: Implications for the Transatlantic Relationship with European Commission Vice President Andrus Ansip – May 28 in Washington, DC, hosted by the Brookings Institution – More Information