Korea-U.S. Trade Partnership: KORUS FTA: Working Together for Growth and Job Creation
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KORUS FTA in the News


"US: Ocean Spray Seeks Korean Expansion," Fresh Plaza, January 18, 2012

Ocean Spray are seeking to raise their profile in Korea where the majority of the population is unfamiliar with cranberries, despite the prominence of the fruit on the world stage. Korea is an important market for the group, being Asia's fourth largest economy.

"Port of Portland Expects to Ship 10,000 Ford Vehicles to South Korea this Year," The Republic, January 12, 2012

The Port of Portland (Ore.) expects to send 10,000 Ford vehicles to South Korea this year, an agreement that predates a recent free-trade agreement between the two countries. . . Port official Greg Borossay says the trade agreement will help Ford sell cars in South Korea.

"Where in the World Should Your Business Sell?" CNN Money, January 9, 2012

With the pro basketball season finally starting, I find myself repeating the scalper's refrain, "Who's buying? Who's selling?" But I'm not thinking about tickets; I'm thinking about business, and small business in particular. . . South Korea comes out on top.

"Free Trade Can Bring Change to North Korea," The Hill, January 5, 2012

This year both the South Korean Parliament and the U.S. Congress passed the long-stalled Korean – U.S. FreeTrade Agreement (KORUS FTA). Although this pact is expected to herald an era of mutual prosperity to both countries, little is known as to another potential for a bigger diplomatic-economic success: The KORUS FTA may offer North Korea powerful incentives to behave.

"KORUS FTA May be effective in Feb.: Trade Minister," Yonhap News Agency, December 14, 2011

The free trade agreement (FTA) between South Korea and the United States may take effect by February next year despite more time needed for preparation, Seoul's top trade official said Wednesday.

"Statement by U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk on Korean Parliament’s Passage of U.S.-Korea Free Trade Agreement," Office of the U.S. Trade Representative, November 22, 2011

U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk made the following statement today regarding the Korean parliament’s passage of legislation approving the U.S.-Korea Free Trade Agreement (KORUS FTA): “The United States welcomes the Korean National Assembly’s approval of the KORUS FTA,” said Ambassador Kirk. “This is a win-win agreement that will provide significant economic and strategic benefits to both countries. We look forward to working closely with the government of Korea to bring the agreement into force as soon as possible.”

"U.S.-South Korea Free-Trade Agreement Wins Approval of Assembly in Seoul," Bloomberg News, November 22, 2011

A free-trade agreement between the U.S. and  South Korea reached more than four years ago will take effect as early as Jan. 1 after lawmakers in Seoul approved the deal over objections from opposition legislators.

"Obama Pushes Nine-Nation Trade Deal Hoping for Japan, China," Bloomberg BusinessWeek, November 8, 2011

President Barack Obama, working to put his own stamp on the rules of international trade, is pursuing an agreement with eight Pacific nations and looking beyond them to the prospects for adding Japan and China. . . South Korea may also look to join the Pacific talks to strengthen its trade ties with the other nations...

"GNP Primed to Vote on Korea-U.S. FTA Bill," Korea Herald, November 8, 2011

The ruling Grand National Party on Monday renewed its resolve to vote on the Korea-U.S. free trade agreement with the key parliamentary plenary session scheduled for Thursday after weeks of political wrangling over the ratification bill. “The Korea-U.S. FTA is a matter of national interest and of paramount importance; we can no longer tolerate the opposition’s approach (to the FTA) out of partisan interests,” GNP spokesman Kim Ki-hyun said in a briefing after the party’s supreme council meeting Monday. “The GNP has agreed to squarely handle FTA ratification as early as possible.”

"What Benefits Will FTAs Bring to Korea?" Korea Times, November 7, 2011

With an economy that depends heavily on trade, Korea has been actively seeking free trade agreements (FTAs) over the past decade. The government’s push to open up to foreign markets through FTAs has helped the resource-scarce country rise to rank as the world’s ninth largest trading nation. This year Korea’s trade volume is expected to surpass $1 trillion.

"Will South Korea and the U.S. Sing in a KORUS FTA?" Asia-Pacific Business & Technology Report, November 3, 2011

A chorus occurs when a group of people harmonize their singing. Therefore, how appropriate that the free trade agreement (FTA) designed to link South Korea and the United States in a synchronized, deeper -- and mutually beneficial -- trade relationship is called the KORUS FTA...

"In Conversation With Lee Myung-bak," Wall Street Journal, October 31, 2011

The Wall Street Journal sat down with President Lee Myung-bak on Friday to talk about the euro zone debt crisis, the coming G-20 summit in France and Seoul’s policy on North Korea among other topics. Following are some of the highlights of the conversation.

"Trade Pacts Seen as Good for State," Fort Wayne Journal-Gazette, October 30, 2011

The U.S. State Department describes South Korea as being slightly larger in geographic size than Indiana. The U.S. trade representative describes South Korea as being a huge opportunity for Indiana exporters. Ambassador Ron Kirk believes Hoosier manufacturers, farmers and service providers will see rewards from recently approved free-trade agreements between the United States and South Korea, Colombia and Panama.

"South Korea’s Lee Urges People to Support Free-Trade Agreement With U.S." Bloomberg News, October 29, 2011

South Korea's government urged lawmakers and the public to support a free-trade agreement with the U.S. that it said would broaden the Asian nation’s “economical territory.” The accord would help boost South Korea’s trade surplus by freeing up exchanges with economies producing 61 percent of global output, the Ministry of Strategy and Economy said today in an e-mailed statement. Delaying ratification would lose the country more than it could win, Finance Minister Bahk Jae Wan said in a commentary on the ministry’s website.

"Florida Citrus to Benefit from S. Korea Trade Pact," Lakeland (FL) Ledger, October 28, 2011

Florida grapefruit growers and packinghouses expect to benefit from the recently approved free trade agreement with South Korea. "The one good thing about the South Korean market is that it's been growing," said Michael Yetter, international marketing manager at the Florida Department of Citrus in Bartow. "If you compare it to two years ago, it's a pretty significant bump."

"Blunt: Trade Deals Will Create U.S. jobs," Springfield (MO) News-Leader, October 25, 2011

During a stop in Springfield Monday, U.S. Sen. Roy Blunt detailed why he backed the recent free trade agreements with Colombia, South Korea and Panama. The agreements will make it easier for American companies to sell goods in those countries and will help spur new jobs here, he said. "These are all three countries that want to buy our products," Blunt said.

"Trade Agreements Expected to Boost Farmer Income," Waterloo Cedar Valley Courier, October 23, 2011

Agricultural economists say long-awaited approval of trade deals with South Korea, Panama and Colombia will be a boon for producers, especially livestock farmers struggling to make a profit because of sky-high feed costs. Tariffs on agricultural products, along with scores of other American-made goods and services, will be reduced or eventually eliminated making them more affordable.

 

"Florida may Benefit from Free Trade Agreements," St. Petersburg Times, October 22, 2011

Fort Pierce grapefruit grower Mike Garavaglia predicts increasing sales to South Koreans with a taste for his tart fruit. The reason: A 30 percent tariff will be phased out over the next five years. Florida is among the states most likely to get a boost from free trade agreements with South Korea, Colombia and Panama that President Barack Obama signed into law Friday. 

"New Free Trade Export Gains Seen by UC Economists," Daily Democrat (Woodland CA), October 22, 2011

Analysis of the recently approved U.S. free trade agreement with South Korea in the April-June 2011 issue of California Agriculture journal shows how California farm exports will now have much improved access to the large South Korean market, significantly enhancing competitive prospects for almonds, walnuts, dairy products, beef and oranges, among other important California commodities.

"Obama Signs Trade Deals with S. Korea, Panama and Colombia - Biggest Agreements since NAFTA," Washington Post, October 21, 2011

President Barack Obama signed off Friday on the first three — and possibly last — free trade agreements of his administration, deals with South Korea, Colombia, and Panama that could be worth billions to American exporters and create tens of thousands of jobs.

"Obama to Sign South Korea, Colombia, Panama Trade Deals Oct. 21," Bloomberg News, October 18, 2011

President Barack Obama will sign the South Korea, Colombia and Panama free trade agreements on Oct. 21, the White House announced. The accords were approved by Congress last week. The agreement with South Korea is the largest trade deal since 1994 and will widen U.S. export access for everything from cars to farm goods and support about 70,000 jobs, according to the administration.

"Obama to Sign 3 Trade Deals on Friday," Associated Press, October 18, 2011

President Barack Obama plans to sign trade agreements with South Korea, Panama and Colombia on Friday, capping years of negotiations and completing U.S. action on the biggest trade deal since the North American Free Trade Agreement in 1993.

"Fla Businesses See Bright Future with Free Trade," Miami Herald, October 18, 2011

Florida businesses are celebrating the approval of the free-trade agreements with Colombia, Panama and South Korea, hoping they boost both the state's exports and its image as the gateway to Latin American business opportunities.

"Caterpillar Heralds Role in Free Trade Agreements," Peoria Star Journal, October 18, 2011

When free trade agreements with South Korea, Colombia and Panama were ratified by Congress last week, Caterpillar Inc. employees could breath a sigh of relief as well as taking some of the credit for their passage, a company spokesman said.

"Three Trade Deals to Become Law," Politico, October 18, 2011

President Obama will sign into law free trade agreements with South Korea, Panama and Colombia on Friday, the White House announced on Tuesday. After signing the FTAs along with the renewal of Trade Adjustment Assistance, Obama will deliver remarks in the Rose Garden and will be joined by business and labor leaders, as well as workers who will be affected by the bills.

"Trade Bills Could Help Increase Long Beach, LA Port Traffic," Long Beach Press-Telegram, October 17, 2011

Newly passed trade bills are expected to boost volumes through local ports, particularly for California farmers and manufacturers exporting to South Korea. The three trade bills, which had been fiercely debated on Capitol Hill for nearly five years, lower tariffs and other barriers on U.S. autos, beef, citrus, tree nuts, cotton and wine, among other products, to South Korea, Panama and Colombia.

"Obama, South Korean President Pledge to Keep and Protect U.S. Jobs," Detroit Free Press, October 15, 2011

Two presidents visited General Motors' Orion Township plant Friday. Both pledged to create and protect American jobs. But only one flaunted a Tigers cap, to the delight of a red-clad UAW crowd. That was South Korean President Lee Myung-bak. "He's a pretty good politician," said the other president, Barack Obama. "As a White Sox fan, I can't wear that."

"Free Trade Deal Could Boost Big 3 in South Korea," Detroit News, October 14, 2011

"(The) approval of the U.S.-Korea Free Trade Agreement will open new opportunities for Ford to reach even more Korean customers by selling them more American-made Focuses, Tauruses, Mustangs, Escapes and Explorers, among other cars and trucks," (Ford CEO Alan) Mulally said Thursday.

 

"Lee Says U.S.-Korea Trade Agreement Will Be Force for Stability," Bloomberg/Business Week, October 14, 2011

A free-trade deal with the U.S. will be a force for stability in Northeast Asia as nations pressure Kim Jong Il to abandon North Korea’s nuclear-weapons program, South Korean President Lee Myung Bak said.

"Obama, in Michigan with S. Korea’s Lee, Casts Himself as Auto Industry’ Savior," Washington Post, October 14, 2011

President Barack Obama cast himself as a savior of the U.S. auto industry Friday, standing in a once-shuttered Michigan assembly plant with the president of South Korea to boast of a new trade deal and the auto bailout he pushed through Congress. “The investment paid off,” Obama declared.

"South Korea’s Leader Helps Obama Woo Michigan," New York Times, October 14, 2011

Fresh from a state visit in Washington that came with all the bells and whistles, including a state dinner, Congressional passage of a free trade pact and an address to a joint meeting of Congress, Mr. Lee joined his “good friend” Mr. Obama for a visit here to promote the trade bill. But Mr. Lee did much more, offering a strong show of support for Mr. Obama in a politically crucial state among auto workers who the president is desperately hoping will reward him for the auto industry bailout by showing up at the polls to vote for him next year.

"S. Korea President Makes High-Profile Chicago Visit," Bloomberg/Business Week, October 14, 2011

After a White House state dinner and a visit to a Michigan auto plant, South Korea's president arrived in Chicago on Friday to further economic ties with a state anxious to tap emerging markets in his homeland.

"Obama Praises GM Workers, Says Auto Bailout 'Worth It'," Detroit News, October 14, 2011

President Barack Obama strongly defended his decision to save the U.S. auto industry with an $85 billion bailout. At an appearance at General Motors' Orion Assembly plant with South Korean President Lee Myung-bak Friday, he also touted the recently approved U.S.-Korea Free Trade Agreement.

"Barack Obama Touts Free Trade to Auto Workers in Michigan," Politico, October 14, 2011

President Barack Obama traveled Friday to the heart of the industrial Midwest to sell a region pummeled by past free-trade agreements on the benefits of a new one with South Korea. His message, delivered from the floor of a General Motors factory here that produces cars with South Korean parts, was essentially that this time would be different.

"South Korean President Tells Congress Trade Pact Will Spur Growth," Los Angeles Times, October 13, 2011

In an address to members of Congress Thursday, South Korea's president thanked lawmakers for passing  a long-awaited trade agreement with his country, what he called the opening of a “new chapter” in the already strong relations between the two nations.

"Congress Ends 5-Year Standoff on Trade Deals in Rare Accord," New York Times, October 12, 2011

Congress passed three long-awaited free trade agreements on Wednesday, ending a political standoff that has stretched across two presidencies. The move offered a rare moment of bipartisan accord at a time when Republicans and Democrats are bitterly divided over the role that government ought to play in reviving the sputtering economy.

"Obama Gets Win as Congress Passes Free-Trade Agreements," Washington Post, October 12, 2011

Congress resoundingly approved long-stalled trade agreements with South Korea, Colombia and Panama late Wednesday, authorizing the most significant expansion of trade relations in nearly two decades.

"Despite Divisiveness, Congress Passes 3 Trade Pacts," Los Angeles Times, October 12, 2011

Congress passed a trio of free-trade agreements late Wednesday, removing barriers to trade with Panama, South Korea and Colombia — but exacerbating deep disagreements among Democrats on the government's role in protecting U.S. industries.

"Congress OKs 3 Trade Deals" Politico, October 12, 2011

 

Congress on Wednesday approved three long-stalled free-trade deals with Colombia, Panama and South Korea. Both the Senate and House sent the free-trade agreements to the White House with large bipartisan majorities — marking a rare moment of congressional agreement amid months of partisan bickering over jobs and the economy.

"Florida Businesses Eager for Free Trade Pacts," Miami Herald, October 10, 2011

Dan Richey, an Indian River citrus packer and distributor, is hoping for more grapefruit on Korean tables, and Doral appliance dealer Hector Marulanda would be happy to see his sales of refrigerators and stoves pick up in Colombia.

"S. Korea Leader Urges Swift Passage of US Trade Pact," Agence France Presse, October 10, 2011

President Lee Myung-Bak called on South Korea's parliament Monday to urgently ratify a major free trade agreement with the United States, saying the US Congress was poised to approve it.

"Local Producers See Rise in Exports to South Korea if Pact OK’d," Spokane Spokesman Review, October 10, 2011

Dick Coon wants to expand his Eastern Washington cattle ranch in hopes that one day his son will come back to run the family operation. If a trade agreement with South Korea passes, he will do that.

"Trade Agreements with 3 Nations to go to Vote Next Week," Billings Gazette, October 10, 2011

After nearly six years, a trio of trade agreements capable of generating 250,000 U.S. jobs and boosting farm profits is almost complete, but needs a push from manufacturing and farm-state lawmakers to succeed.
 

"Obama, South Korean Leader to Visit GM Plant, Tout Trade Pact Friday," Detroit News, October 10, 2011

President Barack Obama and South Korean President Lee Myung-bak will visit General Motors Co.'s Orion Assembly plant on Friday to tout the U.S.-Korea Free Trade Agreement. The White House said the pair will travel to the GM facility in Oakland County's Orion Township to tour the plant and "give remarks on the trade agreement with South Korea that will open up economic opportunities and support jobs on both sides of the Pacific."

"Congress Takes up China Currency, Free Trade and Obama Jobs Bills," Associated Press, October 10, 2011

Congress is embarking on a flurry of votes to show it is trying to do something about creating jobs. The prospects for legislative success, however, are spotty. One exception is in the area of trade. Congress is expected to approve free trade agreements with South Korea, Colombia and Panama that have been pending since the presidency of George W. Bush. Supporters of the treaties — the first completed in the Obama administration — say the pacts could boost exports by $13 billion a year and foster tens of thousands of American jobs.

"Trade Deal Opens Door for S.D.," Sioux Falls Argus Leader, October 10, 2011

A crisis in South Korean farming could provide South Dakota producers with a glimpse of the future under trade agreements that are nearing approval in Congress. Prices for pork have soared in recent months, and many U.S. producers have been expanding production, partly because South Korea temporarily has lifted its duty on U.S. imports. The Koreans are trying to hold down domestic pork prices after an outbreak of foot-and-mouth disease struck the country's farms. The 25 percent duty will return once Korean farms are back to normal, but the tariff would eventually go away for good under the pending trade agreement with the U.S. The Korean agreement is expected to be a boon to the U.S. pork industry once it is implemented, economists say.

"Local Citrus Benefits Cited with South Korean Trade Agreement," Visalia (CA) Times-Delta, October 10, 2011

This time next year, citrus growers in Tulare County will begin reaping the effects of a trade agreement with South Korea that will dramatically reduce tariffs on fruit imports. According to the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative website, the Korean Free Trade Agreement will render nearly two-thirds of agriculture imports duty-free upon entry.

"DC Ahead: Trade Deals, Currency Bill To Take Center Stage In Congress," Wall Street Journal, October 10, 2011

Trade will be front and center in Congress this week as lawmakers seek to approve three new trade pacts and punish China for its currency policy. Free-trade agreements with South Korea, Colombia and Panama are poised for long-awaited passage as House and Senate leaders vowed to hold votes next Wednesday. Administration and business officials are confident the Bush-era trade deals will finally win passage, though several major unions are actively lobbying to defeat them.

"Trade a Litmus Test for U.S. Leadership," Reuters, October 9, 2011

Anger over the loss of U.S. jobs, fear that America's global economic dominance is sliding, and bitter presidential politics have created a toxic backdrop for U.S. lawmakers this week as they vote on three free-trade deals and a currency bill aimed at penalizing China. The decisions in Congress will prove an important litmus test for United States' willingness to embrace trade-opening measures in the face of high unemployment and a stalling economic recovery.

"Obama, S. Korea Leader on Way to Detroit Area in Free Trade Effort," Detroit News, October 8, 2011

President Barack Obama and South Korean President Lee Myung-bak will travel to Metro Detroit next Friday to tout the benefits of a free trade deal between the two nations. Obama and Lee will "travel to the Detroit area to talk about the trade agreement with South Korea that will open up economic opportunities and support jobs on both sides of the Pacific," a White House official told The Detroit News.

"Senate and House to Vote on Trade Deals Wednesday," Reuters, October 7, 2011

The House of Representatives and the Senate will vote next Wednesday on three long-delayed trade deals with South Korea, Panama and Colombia, congressional leaders said.

"Lawmakers Vow to Vote on Trade Pacts," Wall Street Journal, October 7, 2011

House and Senate leaders vowed to hold votes next Wednesday on free-trade agreements with South Korea, Colombia and Panama, setting the stage for final votes on the long-awaited trade pacts ahead of a state visit by South Korean President Lee Myung-bak next week.

"Vilsack: Jobs Plan, Trade Pacts Will Bolster Iowa Economy," Cedar Rapids Gazette, October 7, 2011

Now that the Obama administration has applied first aid to the nation’s economy, “it’s time to repair the patient,” according to Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack. The former Iowa governor will be in Cedar Rapids on Saturday for a roundtable discussion with business people at CSPS that is closed to the public. He will be promoting President Barack Obama’s American Jobs Act and trade agreements. He said both will give businesses confidence to begin hiring and consumers confidence to begin spending.

"Aviation and Agriculture Are Winners in New US Trade Pacts," CNBC, October 7, 2011

From aviation to agriculture, a broad cohort of US industry is looking forward to the passage of US trade deals with Colombia and Panama next week.

"Senate May Vote on Trade Pacts Oct. 12 as Daley Urges Passage," Bloomberg/Business Week, October 6, 2011

The U.S. Senate may vote on pending free-trade agreements as soon as Oct. 12, Majority Leader Harry Reid said after White House Chief of Staff William Daley urged lawmakers to finish work on the pacts next week.

"Trade Deals Could Be Voted on Next Week," Wall Street Journal, October 6, 2011

House and Senate leaders are working on a deal to pass three long-delayed free-trade agreements next week, a bold gambit that if successful would mark an unusually fast turnaround for trade pacts in Congress.

"US Senate Panel Seen Voting on Trade Pacts Next Week," Reuters, October 6, 2011

The Senate Finance Committee will vote on Tuesday on three long-delayed trade deals with Sout Korea, Panama and Colombia, a congressional source said on Thursday.

"Oregon to be Nation's First Blueberry Exporter to Korea," Portland Business Journal, October 6, 2011

The Oregon Department of Agriculture on Wednesday said the state will become the first in the nation to ship fresh blueberries to Korea, opening a potentially lucrative new market to one of Oregon's most promising agricultural exports.

"Trade Deals Could be Completed Next Week," The Hill, October 6, 2011

Lawmakers could expedite three pending free trade-deals ahead of the Korean president's state visit next week. Senate Finance Chairman Max Baucus (D-Mont.) announced Thursday that his panel will take up the trade deals with Colombia, South Korea and Panama on Tuesday afternoon after lawmakers return from the Columbus Day holiday.

"Senate Vote on Free-Trade Deals May Happen Next Week, Reid Says," CNN, October 6, 2011

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said Thursday that he is hopeful the Senate will vote next week on proposed free-trade agreements with Colombia, Panama and South Korea.

"Stalled Free Trade Deals Now on a Fast Track, White House Says," Christian Science Monitor, October 6, 2011

By the time South Korea’s President Lee Myung-bak arrives at the White House for a state dinner honoring him next Thursday, President Obama will be able to present him with a ratified US-Korea free trade agreement.

"Congress Ready to Vote on Three Free-Trade Accords Within Week," Bloomberg News, October 6, 2011

Congress is prepared to vote in less than a week on free-trade agreements with South Korea, Colombia and Panama that were reached more than four years ago.

"Pending Free Trade Agreements Head to House, Rep. Dave Camp Expects Jobs and Increase to GDP," Midland News, October 6, 2011

The House Ways and Means Committee, chaired by U.S. Rep. Dave Camp, R-Midland, approved three pending trade agreements Wednesday with Colombia, Panama and South Korea. Now the ball's in Congress' court. Camp said Wednesday's approval could not come at a better time for American workers, consumers and businesses.

"Trade Deals Teed up in the House," The Hill, October 5, 2011

Many lawmakers will breathe a collective sigh of relief while others will grumble in frustration as the three trade deals with South Korea, Colombia and Panama are considered on Capitol Hill. The House Ways and Means Committee will mark up the agreements — only Colombia is open for amendment — before sending them along for what will likely be floor consideration some time next week.

"Mayor Sees Opportunity for Tacoma in Trade Pact Before Congress," Tacoma News Tribune, October 5, 2011

While Kia imported its millionth vehicle from South Korea to the Port of Tacoma in August, Tacoma Mayor Marilyn Strickland wants to see more American cars exported to Seoul, the city where she was born in 1962. “If you walk around Seoul, you don’t see very many cars that aren’t Hyundai or Kia, so there’s an opportunity for us,” she said. “If we can get access to the automobile market in Korea, it means a lot of American jobs."

"Long-Stalled Trade Agreement with South Korea Sees Some Light," PBS News Hour, October 5, 2011

When I accompanied a group of editors and producers to Korea in November 2007, the big news was the pending final approval of a multi-billion free trade agreement between Washington and Seoul. Four years later, it is still pending. But there are signs of movement on the eve of the state visit to Washington of South Korean President Lee Myung-bak. On Monday, President Obama sent trade deals with South Korea, Colombia and Panama to Congress for approval. 

"Congress Likely to Pass US Trade Deals – Lawmaker," Reuters, October 4, 2011

"A senior U.S. congressional Democrat said on Tuesday he expected Congress to pass three trade agreements with South Korea, Colombia and Panama..."

"Congress may Receive Free-Trade Pacts Today" Detroit News, October 3, 2011

President Barack Obama may send free-trade agreements with South Korea, Colombia and Panama to Congress for consideration as soon as today, according to a person familiar with the administration's plans. 

"Submission of KORUS FTA Implementing Legislation Welcomed by Ambassador Han," Embassy of the Republic of Korea, October 3, 2011

The Ambassador of the Republic of Korea to the U.S. today welcomed President Obama’s submission of implementing legislation for the pending U.S.-Korea Free Trade Agreement (KORUS FTA) to the United States Congress.

"Disputed Trade Pacts Advance," Wall Street Journal, October 3, 2011

President Barack Obama could send trade pacts with South Korea, Colombia and Panama to Congress for approval early this week, setting the stage for final passage of the agreements in mid-October after five years of political combat.

"Obama Said Poised to Submit Three Trade Accords to U.S. Congress," Bloomberg/Business Week, October 3, 2011

President Barack Obama may send free- trade agreements with South Korea, Colombia and Panama to Congress for consideration as soon as today, according to a person familiar with the administration’s plans.

"Report: Obama Sending Trade Pacts to Hill," Politico, October 3, 2011

President Barack Obama may send the long-delayed trade deals with South Korea, Colombia and Panama to Congress this week, according to new reports.

"Delayed U.S. Trade Deals may go to Congress Soon," Reuters, October 3, 2011

President Barack Obama may send to Congress as early as Monday three long-stalled free trade agreements with South Korea, Panama and Colombia, a senior administration official said on Saturday.

"Hill Finds Elusive Harmony on Trade," Politico, October 3, 2011

Congress hasn’t had much to celebrate in a year dominated by bitter spending battles and partisan dysfunction. So lawmakers from both parties are heralding the pending passage of a major free-trade package as a victory — and a sign that Washington isn’t entirely broken.

"Statement from President Obama on the Submission of the Korea, Colombia, and Panama Trade Agreements" The White House, October 3, 2011

“The series of trade agreements I am submitting to Congress today will make it easier for American companies to sell their products in South Korea, Colombia, and Panama and provide a major boost to our exports.  These agreements will support tens of thousands of jobs across the country for workers making products stamped with three proud words: Made in America.  We've worked hard to strengthen these agreements to get the best possible deal for American workers and businesses, and I call on Congress to pass them without delay, along with the bipartisan agreement on Trade Adjustment Assistance that will help workers whose jobs have been affected by global competition.”

"Obama Ends Long Delay on Free-Trade Agreements," Washington Times, October 3, 2011

President Obama on Monday finally sent Congress long-delayed free-trade agreements with Panama, South Korea and Colombia, breaking a deadlock that extends back to the George W. Bush Administration and setting up a showdown on Capitol Hill.

"Diaz-Balart, Ros-Lehtinen Applaud Trade Agreements," Miami Herald, October 3, 2011

Saying "it's about time," both Miami Republican Reps. Mario Diaz-Balart and Ileana Ros-Lehtinen on Monday said they support the free trade agreements the White House sent to Congress Monday.

"Free Trade Deals Could Boost CT Exports 70 Percent," Hartford Business Journal, October 2, 2011

Greg Bachmann hopes the time for a South Korean free trade agreement finally has come. The president and CEO of Torrington adhesive manufacturer Dymax Corp. has grown tired of waiting for the U.S. Congress to act on a pending free trade agreement with the Asian country. Without a deal, Bachmann is left to fight against competitors from other countries who have better trade arrangements.

"Washington Owns Big Stake in Korean Trade Deal," Tri-City Herald, October 2, 2011

While Kia imported its millionth vehicle from South Korea to the Port of Tacoma last month, Tacoma Mayor Marilyn Strickland wants to see more American cars exported to Seoul, the city where she was born in 1962. "If you walk around Seoul, you don't see very many cars that aren't Hyundai or Kia, so there's an opportunity for us," she said. "If we can get access to the automobile market in Korea, it means a lot of American jobs." Strickland, the city's second-year mayor, wants Congress to pass the long-stalled trade pact between the United States and South Korea. For her, it's an easy call: "Washington is the most trade-dependent state in America, and we are a port city."




"The Last Push is On for Three Free-Trade Agreements," California Apparel News, September 30, 2011

If all goes well, the pending free-trade agreements with South Korea, Panama and Colombia could be a done deal by Halloween. A green light was given for the trade accords after a major battle between President Obama and Congress was resolved.

"Bourbon Distillers Focus on South Korea Free Trade Debate," Miami Herald, September 26, 2011

Distillers of bourbon — Kentucky's trademark spirit — are hopeful that a long-stymied free-trade agreement with South Korea will boost U.S. liquor exports. Industry proponents say a provision in the free-trade agreement with South Korea would recognize bourbon as a uniquely American product and therefore offer protections that would help stave off bootlegging. The agreement also would immediately eliminate a 20 percent South Korean tariff on bourbon while phasing out tariffs on other types of whiskeys and scotch over several years. Bourbon boosters say the move would give a needed advantage in gaining a foothold in Korea, which distillery analysts say is the 11th largest spirits market in the world.

"Ford, Dow, Whirlpool CEOs Urge Passage of Free Trade Deals," Detroit News, September 24, 2011

The CEOs of more than 30 major companies — including Michigan-based Ford Motor Co., Dow Chemical Co., Whirlpool Corp. and Amway Corp. — on Friday urged Congress to quickly approve pending free trade agreements with South Korea, Panama and Colombia.

"Reid: Senate on Track to Advance Trade Legislation," The Hill, September 22, 2011

The Senate on Thursday will likely take an important step towards considering trade agreements with Columbia, South Korea and Panama, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) suggested Wednesday evening.

"McMillan Urges US Deals on Free Trade agreements," Montgomery Advertiser, September 21, 2011

Flanked by representatives from the beef and poultry industries, John McMillan, commissioner of the Alabama Department of Agriculture and Industries, on Tuesday called on President Barack Obama and Congress to approve free trade agreements with South Korea, Colombia and Panama.

"Senate Moves toward Action on Trade Deals," Reuters, September 20, 2011

The Senate began debate on Monday on a bill that waives tariffs on goods from developing countries in a step toward congressional approval of three long-delayed trade deals. . . . Supporters of free trade agreements with South Korea, Colombia and Panama hope the Senate action will help set the stage for President Barack Obama to formally submit the pacts to Congress for votes.

"Senate Takes up Worker Aid Bill Seen as Key to Passing 3 Free Trade Agreements," Associated Press, September 20, 2011

A half-century-old program that helps workers who lose their jobs to foreign trade holds the key to whether Congress may finally approve three long-delayed free trade agreements viewed by both the Obama White House and congressional Republicans as a way to invigorate the economy and create jobs.

"Senate Set to Debate Worker Aid in Push to Advance Trade Deals," Bloomberg News, September 20, 2011

The U.S. Senate is set to begin debate today on trade preference and worker-aid programs that would clear the way for President Barack Obama to send Congress three pending free-trade agreements.

"Trade Adjustment Assistance Moves Forward in Senate," Roll Call, September 20, 2011

The Senate cleared a procedural hurdle today on legislation considered crucial to winning Democratic support for trade agreements with Colombia, Panama and South Korea, thanks in part to overwhelming support from Republicans.

"Senate Advances Key Trade Measure," Agence France Presse, September 20, 2011

The US Senate on Monday advanced a key trade measure seen as critical to the eventual passing of stalled free trade deals with Colombia, Panama, and South Korea.

"McConnell: FTAs to be Submitted Soon," Dow Jones, September 20, 2011

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R., Ky.) said Tuesday he expects free-trade agreements with South Korea, Colombia and Panama to be submitted to Congress soon, as debate got underway on a tariff bill that could pave the way for passage of the long-delayed trade pacts.

Gov. Dayton to Travel to South Korea," KAAL TV, September 20, 2011

This Sunday Governor Mark Dayton and representatives from over 20 businesses will head to South Korea to talk trade. South Korea is Minnesota's sixth largest export market. The governor's trade mission has farmers hopeful a free trade agreement will be worked out soon.

"Senate Votes to Advance Components of Trade Package," The Hill, September 19, 2011

The Senate voted 84 to 8 on Monday to move forward with a bill to renew an expired program that provides for cheaper American manufacturing by establishing tariff-free exports on some manufacturing inputs to the United States from over 120 developing countries.

"Chamber Urges Lawmakers to Pass Worker-Assistance Measure," The Hill, September 19, 2011

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce sent a letter Monday to Senators urging the extension trade preferences and worker assistance programs as part of a measure set for consideration this week. The Chamber, considers the vote renew the Generalized System of Preferences (GSP), which expired in December, and the Trade Adjustment Assistance (TAA) amendment as so-called key votes. . . . Eventual passage of the combined GSP-TAA bill will "create a path forward for approval of the pending trade agreements with South Korea, Colombia and Panama, which are among the Chamber’s top legislative priorities this year.”

"Congress Moves Closer to New Free Trade Agreements," Daily Caller, September 19, 2011

Congress moved closer to approving new free trade agreements with Colombia, Panama and South Korea after a procedural vote in the Senate Monday afternoon.

"(Korean) Official Discusses Trade Pact during Stockton Visit," The Record (Stockton CA), September 12, 2011

Ratification of the long-pending South Korea-U.S. free-trade agreement would have a tremendous impact on California farm and wine exports, but partisan bickering in Washington threatens to further delay the pact. Those were among the observations made by Jeong Gwan Lee, South Korean consul general in San Francisco, during a recent meeting with The Record's editorial board.

"Even Without Obama Push, Pact Supporters Confident," National Journal, September 12, 2011

In the hours leading up to President Obama’s speech to Congress, many pro-trade lawmakers were hoping he would make the pending trade agreements with Colombia, Panama, and South Korea a cornerstone of his plan to create jobs. But the 34-minute speech on Thursday night included only a brief reference to the three deals. Although Obama only mentioned trade as a general goal, most lawmakers and trade experts remain confident that the progress that began with the House-passed renewal of the Generalized System of Preferences last week was a far more important sign that the trade deals may soon be completed.

"Alabama Agriculture Commissioner John McMillan Calls for Approval of Trade Agreements" Mobile Press-Register, September 11, 2011

Alabama Agriculture Commissioner John McMillan added his voice Friday to those pushing President Barack Obama and Congress to pass free trade agreements with South Korea, Colombia and Panama. "We need the opportunity to open up more trade," said McMillan, who spoke in the doorway of a port warehouse filled with rolls of fluff pulp made by Georgia-Pacific LLC in Monroe County. The pulp, used as absorbent filling in diapers and similar products, is one example of an agricultural product exported from Alabama.

"Trade Agreements could Bring Jobs to South Florida," South Florida Business Journal, September 10, 2011

As a major exporting hub and an area of the economy that has thrived during the recession, exporters in South Florida could benefit from passage of these trade agreements, said J. Antonio Villamil, dean of the St. Thomas University business school.

"House Vote Could Move Stalled Trade Agenda," New York Times, September 8, 2011

A House vote Wednesday to extend an expired trade program for the world's poorer countries lays the groundwork for what could be more politically important consideration of three free trade agreements that both the White House and congressional Republicans say could help put Americans back to work.

"House Vote on Tariff Preferences May Help Advance Trade Accords," Bloomberg News, September 8, 2011

Stalled free-trade agreements with South Korea, Colombia and Panama may advance after the U.S. House of Representatives voted to renew tariff preferences on goods from developing nations that expired last year.

"Republicans Ask Obama to Send Congress Trade Pacts," New York Times, September 7, 2011

Nearly a dozen Republican senators on Wednesday urged President Barack Obama to quickly send Congress three long-delayed trade deals that they said would help put Americans back to work.

"New Trade Agreements will Benefit Kansas," Salina Journal, August 26, 2011

When Congress reconvenes in a few weeks, one important piece of business should be approving new trade agreements with South Korea, Panama and Colombia, said Rep. Tim Huelskamp.

"Export Initiative Can Help Local Companies," Plattsburg Press-Republican (NY), August 25, 2011

At a recent Export and Investment roundtable at the North Country Chamber of Commerce, Peter Perez, deputy assistant secretary for manufacturing for the U.S. Department of Commerce's International Trade Administration, provided details on the initiative, which took effect in March 2010. Perez said 95 percent of consumers worldwide live outside the United States. They remain a largely untapped market, he said, as only 1 percent of U.S. companies export and most of those do so to only Canada or Mexico. In 2009, exports made up 11 percent of the U.S. gross domestic product, he said. That compared with 25 percent in China, 27 percent in Canada and 41 percent in Germany. "This suggests we've got some work to do," Perez said.

"Canada-Colombia Trade Pact Begins as U.S. Deals Stall – Camp: Americans now ‘Disadvantaged’," Washington Times, August 18, 2011

As several free-trade pacts negotiated under President George W. Bush continue to collect dust, other countries are moving ahead with their own trade deals, a scenario many say puts U.S. industries at a competitive disadvantage and risks American jobs.

Federal Official Promotes Stalled Trade Deals at Port," Long Beach Press-Telegram, August 17, 2011

U.S. Trade Representative Ronald Kirk toured the Port of Los Angeles on Tuesday to tout the benefits of a pending free trade accord with South Korea, Colombia and Panama. The deal has stalled in Congress for several years, but could potentially bolster exports by $12 billion annually and create about 70,000 jobs nationwide, Kirk said.

"Iowa Republicans/Obama Find Something to Agree on: A Trade Deal," Des Moines Register, August 17, 2011

Several key Iowa Republicans agree on at least one goal outlined by President Obama: A trade deal with South Korea. Obama broadly spoke about trade agreements but didn’t specifically mention the South Korea trade deal. However, it is one he supports and is also one that Gov. Terry Branstad, a Republican, has also spoken publicly in favor.

"White House Pushes Congress to Prioritize Passing Free Trade Deals," The Hill, August 14, 2011

Passing three pending free-trade deals remains a top priority for the White House and congressional leaders as competing interests nudge their way onto the September agenda. 

"South Korea’s Lee Urges Speedy Ratification of U.S. Trade Pact," Bloomberg News, August 14, 2011

 

South Korea’s free trade agreement with the U.S. is a key to maintaining growth amid unprecedented economic uncertainty and needs to be ratified soon, President Lee Myung Bak said. "The only way we can survive is to march toward the world," he said in a televised address to celebrate the Korean peninsula’s liberation from Japan in 1945. 

"Free Trade Agreement could Help Soybean Farmers," Coshocton Tribune, August 13, 2011

A free trade agreement proposal between the U.S. and Panama, South Korea and Colombia involving soybeans could be a boon to Ohio soybean farmers, including those in Coshocton County.

"Congress Has a Shot at Passing Jobs-Creating Bills," Associated Press, August 13, 2011

When Congress gets back to work after Labor Day it will have the chance to achieve something that has largely eluded it for the entire year, passing legislation that might actually create jobs. With the battering debate over the debt ceiling over, the stage is set for Congress to approve and President Barack Obama to sign three big free-trade agreements and the most significant overhaul of the patent system in 60 years.

"Ohio Soybean Farmers Welcome Free Trade Plans as Sign of Hope," Lancaster Eagle-Gazette, August 7, 2011

With 55 percent of Ohio's total agriculture exports coming from soybeans, a free trade agreement proposal with Panama, South Korea and Colombia is getting high praise from Ohio growers and the Ohio Soybean Association. "The OSA asks our elected officials to support efforts to open new markets and allow America's farmers to fairly compete for business from countries needing agriculture products," OSA President and Darke County farmer Jeff Wuebker said. "Inaction regarding their trade agreements has resulted in the loss of U.S. market share and slower economic growth."

"With Trade and Patent Bills, Congress has Shot at Finally Creating Jobs During Stalled Economy," Washington Post, August 7, 2011

When Congress gets back to work after Labor Day it will have the chance to achieve something that has largely eluded it for the entire year, passing legislation that might actually create jobs. With the battering debate over the debt ceiling over, the stage is set for Congress to approve and President Barack Obama to sign three big free-trade agreements and the most significant overhaul of the patent system in 60 years.

"Senate Leaders Announce They Will Take up Trade Bills, Worker Assistance Bill," Washington Post, August 4, 2011

Senate leaders said late Wednesday that they had agreed on a path toward passing legislation to help workers displaced by foreign trade and taking up three free trade agreements that have languished since they were signed during the George W. Bush administration.

"Trade Deals Clear Hurdle in Senate," Wall Street Journal, August 4, 2011

Senate leaders said Wednesday they had reached a bipartisan agreement to renew funding for trade-related unemployment benefits, likely clearing the way for passage of three delayed free-trade pacts once Congress returns in September.

"Breakthrough on Trade Agreements," Politico, August 4, 2011

On the heels of a $2.1 trillion deficit deal, Senate leaders said Wednesday night they reached agreement on moving forward with three long-stalled free trade agreements.

"Senate Leaders Reach Deal Paving Way for Passage of Trade Deals," The Hill, August 4, 2011

Senate leaders announced Wednesday night three long-stalled trade agreements will move through the chamber in September. 

"Reid, McConnell Find Way Forward on Trade Pacts," Roll Call, August 4, 2011

The Senate has resolved a months-long impasse blocking ratification of free-trade agreements with Colombia, Panama and South Korea, Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) and Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) announced Wednesday evening.

"U.S. Senate Leaders End Impasse on Three Trade Deals, Worker Aid," Bloomberg News, August 4, 2011

U.S. Senate leaders ended an impasse over stalled free-trade agreements, agreeing to vote after the August recess on benefits for workers who lose their jobs because of overseas competition, then take up the trade deals.

"Congress Leaders Agree on Path to Trade Deals," Reuters, August 4, 2011

Congressional leaders said on Wednesday they have agreed upon a path to approve three long-delayed free trade agreements and a program to help U.S. workers who lose their jobs because of foreign competition.

"US Senators Reach Compromise on Free Trade Deals," Voice of America, August 4, 2011

U.S. Senate leaders have reached a potential bipartisan compromise on three long-delayed free-trade agreements with Colombia, Panama, and South Korea.

"Trade Pacts Urged for Export Growth," Wall Street Journal, July 28, 2011

With a target of doubling exports by 2015, the Obama Administration needs to push through pending free-trade pacts with Colombia, Panama and South Korea to level the playing field for smaller U.S. exporters, House lawmakers said Wednesday.

"South Korean Envoy Touts Potential Impact of Trade Agreement on NH Jobs," New Hampshire Union-Leader, July 26, 2011

Han Duk-soo, South Korean ambassador to the United States, stopped by St. Anselm College and the New Hampshire Union Leader on Monday during his cross-country tour to promote a free trade agreement between the U.S. and the Republic of Korea. “It will help a lot of companies grow in New Hampshire and the United States,” Han said.

"Business Leaders: Trade Agreements Would Boost Huntsville Economy," Huntsville Times (Ala.), July 22, 2011

Trade agreements with South Korea, Colombia and Panama would boost economic growth and job creation in Huntsville, the head of the business association of chief executive officers of leading U.S. companies said.

"Report: Free Trade with South Korea Would Boost Ohio Jobs," Dayton Business Journal, July 20, 2011

Trade agreements with South Korea, Columbia and Panama would boost economic growth and create jobs in Dayton, according to Business Roundtable President John Engler who has called on lawmakers to enact pacts with those countries.

"Free Trade Agreements Offer New Opportunities for Soybean Farmers," Farmers' Advance, July 20, 2011

Ohio soybean farmers benefit greatly from international markets, and thousands of Ohio jobs depend on soybean exports. The Ohio Soybean Association (OSA) supports the pending Free Trade Agreements (FTA) with Panama, South Korea and Colombia, and urges their immediate passage and implementation.

"Free Trade Pacts with South Korea, Colombia and Panama Could Boost U.S. Exports, Jobs," Dallas Morning News, July 19, 2011

Exports remain one of the few bright spots of the economy. The Dallas Federal Reserve Bank says that Texas exports through April were up 17 percent over last year. Even at the lowest point of the recession in 2009, Texas exports supported 538,500 jobs, according to the U.S.

"Exports: The Silver Lining in the Slow Recovery," National Journal, July 18, 2011

In 2002, a researcher from the Battelle Memorial Institute identified a glimmer of economic hope in the Rust Belt doldrums of central Indiana. The state’s nascent life-sciences industry, Dr. Walter H. Plosila wrote, had the potential to grow into a major driver of economic expansion and job creation, due in part to the same forces of global competition that had rocked the industrial Midwest for decades. Policymakers listened. Indiana’s life-sciences sector—including agricultural chemicals and feedstocks, medical equipment, pharmaceuticals, and medical research—blossomed into a national leader. In a follow-up report released last month by the industry seed group BioCrossroads, Plosila calculated that Indiana’s life-science exports nearly tripled from 2002 to 2010, from $2.5 billion to $7.4 billion. Jobs grew, too: From 2005 to 2010, life-science companies committed to hire nearly 15,000 new people in the state.

"Silicon Valley to Benefit from U.S.-South Korea Trade Pact," San Jose Mercury News, July 8, 2011

With the long-delayed free-trade agreement with South Korea inching closer to congressional approval, the tech industry is hailing it as a blueprint for future treaties because it includes provisions important to Silicon Valley, from better intellectual property protection to greater access to markets.

"Envoy Hits the Road for Trade Deal," Wall Street Journal, July 6, 2011

Han Duk-Soo, the South Korean ambassador to the U.S., gripped the handrail of a tour boat jammed with business leaders in the harbor here one recent morning, fighting the flu and trying not to lose his breakfast. The port tour was just the beginning of Mr. Han's 16-hour day on the free-trade campaign trail, trying to convince Americans that a pending trade agreement with South Korea is a good deal for both sides. Mr. Han and a team of other officials from Washington and Seoul have taken their pitch to berry growers and racehorse breeders, immigrant merchants and assembly-line employees in an unusual effort to build public support for one of President Barack Obama's maiden trade pacts.

"US Sen Portman: Senate Approval for 3 Trade Pacts Likely Soon," Dow Jones, June 30, 2011

 

U.S. Sen. Rob Portman (R., Ohio) on Thursday said he is confident three free-trade deals will win Senate approval this year, though he knocked the Obama administration for trying to link them to a worker training program. "I am hopeful they can even be done by the August recess. It's not like we're busy doing a lot of other things on the floor right now," Portman said in an interview.

"Congress Moves Forward on Free Trade Deals," CNNMoney, June 29, 2011

The Senate will officially take up three trade deals and a scaled-back version of a jobs retraining program for laid-off workers on Thursday.

"New Sources Pushing Trade Deals," Roll Call, June 29, 2011

With American companies panicking that a trade agreement between the European Union and South Korea is poised to rob them of millions of dollars, business groups are increasing pressure on Congress to pass a similar deal this summer. While much of the debate surrounding the long-stalled agreement between the U.S. and Korea has focused on American automobile parts, pork and benefits for out-of-work Americans, the financial services and medical devices industries have become key players in the last-minute campaign, highlighted this week by a U.S. Chamber of Commerce tour of key districts.

"Korea Trade Deal Supporters Tout Benefits to N.J.," Newark Star-Ledger, June 28, 2011

The long-delayed agreement reached yesterday between the White House and Congress on free trade with Korea would be a huge boost to New Jersey businesses, supporters of the plan said.

"Prospects Brighten for Trade Pacts," Wall Street Journal, June 28, 2011

Congressional negotiators and the White House said Tuesday they had reached a deal to break a weeks-long stalemate that has delayed ratification votes on free-trade pacts with South Korea, Colombia and Panama. The two sides said they would push for votes on the long-stalled pacts before Congress adjourns for the summer.

"Korean Ambassador Pushes Trade Bill in Boston," Boston Business Journal, June 28, 2011

The Korean Ambassador to the United States spoke in Boston Tuesday morning as part of a national tour to urge support for a stalled trade agreement that proponents say could help accelerate local business exports to South Korea. During the event held by Associated Industries of Massachusetts, The U.S. Chamber of Commerce and State Street Corporation (NYSE: STT), Han discussed the importance of the U.S.-Korean Trade Agreement and emphasized the need for its passage in Congress in the coming days.

"South Korea's Ambassador in Syracuse Area Wednesday for Free-Trade Pact," Syracuse Post-Standard, June 28, 2011

South Korea’s ambassador to the United States will be in Central New York Wednesday to promote a free-trade treaty. Han Duck-Soo, who was South Korea’s prime minister in 2007 and 2008, will start his day at Welch-Allyn, in Skaneateles, where he will tour the medical device maker’s plant. South Korea is America’s seventh-largest trading partner, according to government statistics. It’s also an important market for Central New York companies, said Rob Simpson, president of CenterState Corp. for Economic Opportunity. 

"Agreement Frees Up Free Trade Agreements," ABC News, June 28, 2011

The White House and Senate Democrats say they have reached an agreement on the underlying terms for a renewal of Trade Adjustment Assistance for American workers, paving the way for lawmakers to move forward with pending free trade agreements with South Korea, Colombia and Panama.

"White House and Congress Clear Trade Deal Hurdle," New York Times, June 28, 2011

The White House struck a deal with House Republicans Tuesday to reinstate benefits for workers who lose jobs to foreign competition, addressing a major obstacle to consideration of three free trade agreements with South Korea, Colombia and Panama.

"Obama Administration Says Trade Deals, TAA will Pass Congress," The Hill, June 28, 2011

Wrapping up work on three long-delayed pending free trade agreements could be dependent on whether the White House and congressional Republicans can reach an accord passing an expanded version of a program to retrain workers who lost their jobs because of foreign trade. 

"White House: Confident Free Trade Pacts will Pass," Reuters, June 28, 2011

The Obama administration said on Tuesday that it expected lawmakers to agree to a compromise package of measures to approve long delayed trade deals with South Korea, Colombia and Panama.

"Senate Panel Sees Trade Progress," Politico, June 28, 2011

Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus (D-Mont.) announced a breakthrough Tuesday on long-delayed trade agreements with South Korea, Colombia and Panama, scheduling a key Thursday committee markup on a major trade package.

 

"Obama's Trade Deals Begin to Move in Congress," USA Today, June 28, 2011

Free trade agreements with South Korea, Colombia and Panama -- long delayed by the Obama administration and then by Republicans -- finally are ready to move through Congress.

"Senate Panel Sees Trade Progress," Politico, June 28, 2011

Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus (D-Mont.) announced a breakthrough Tuesday on long-delayed trade agreements with South Korea, Colombia and Panama, scheduling a key Thursday committee markup on a major trade package.

 

"Baucus Announces Grand Bargain to Clear Three Pending Trade Deals," The Hill, June 28, 2011

Sen. Max Baucus (D-Mont.) announced a deal Tuesday that should clear the path for congressional approval of three pending trade agreements with Colombia, Panama and South Korea. Baucus said he had secured an agreement with the White House and Rep. Dave Camp (R-Mich.), chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee, to renew the expanded version of Trade Adjustment Assistance (TAA). The program, which funds job-training programs and healthcare benefits for workers hurt by trade, will be extended until the end of 2013.

"US Senate Panel to Start Work on Trade Deals," Reuters, June 28, 2011

The Senate Finance Committee said it will begin long-awaited action this Thursday on three free U.S. trade agreements with South Korea, Colombia and Panama that have been stalled for years.

"Business Group Backs Compromise on Trade Deals," Reuters, June 28, 2011

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce on Tuesday urged Republicans and Democrats to support what it called a "reasonable compromise" to move long-delayed trade deals with South Korea, Panama and Colombia.

"Deal on Pacts With Three Nations Could Be Close," National Journal, June 21, 2011

House Republicans retreated from their plan to begin preliminary markup on the pending trade agreements with Colombia, Panama, and South Korea, but the public stalling may signal that negotiators are making better progress behind closed doors.

"Differences Narrow in Job-Aid Talks Tied to Trade Pacts" Wall Street Journal, June 21, 2011

Democrats and Republicans have "substantially" narrowed differences over restoring benefits for trade-related job losses, as both sides work toward beginning informal debate on free-trade agreements, U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk said Monday.

"US-Korea FTA too Important to Wait: US Ambassador," Agence France Presse, June 17, 2011

US exporters could lose ground to European competitors unless Congress quickly ratifies a free trade agreement (FTA) with South Korea, according to US ambassador Kathleen Stephens. Answering a question, she expressed concern about the disadvantage US businesses could face when an FTA between South Korea and the European Union -- the most ambitious trade accord the EU has negotiated -- takes effect in July.

"Deal Near on Trade Agreements, Worker Aid," Washington Post, June 16, 2011

The Obama administration and congressional leaders are nearing consensus on three pending trade agreements and the renewal of support for workers who have been displaced by global trade, ending a standoff that some feared would put U.S. exports at risk, said business, administration and congressional officials close to the discussions.

"Chamber Sees Deal Soon to Move Trade Pacts," New York Times, June 16, 2011

White House and congressional negotiators appear "within striking distance" of a deal on a retraining program that has held up votes on trade agreements with South Korea, Colombia and Panama, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce said on Wednesday.

"Trade Deals Could Be Ready Next Week," The Hill, June 16, 2011

Congressional lawmakers and the White House are closing in on agreement that could bring three pending trade agreements to a House panel for consideration next week. "We continue to move to a [mock markup] schedule for next week," Rep. Kevin Brady (R-Texas) told The Hill on Thursday night.

"Obama Trade Deals Get Big Push from Business Lobby," USA Today, June 15, 2011

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce unveiled a lobbying effort today designed to win the votes for three foreign trade deals -- one House district at a time. The chamber, which has long supported free-trade agreements with South Korea, Colombia and Panama even while President Obama was reworking them, displayed a new website showing the impact of the deals by state and district. The site, www.TradeSupportsJob.com, lists data on companies, their exports, where the products go and how many jobs they produce.

"Delayed Trade Deals Gaining Momentum," The Hill, June 15, 2011

Congressional lawmakers and the Obama administration could move forward as early as next week on three pending free trade deals as negotiators near an agreement on the renewal of an aid program to help workers displaced by trade. U.S. Chamber of Commerce officials said Wednesday that they're "optimistic" that lawmakers and the White House are "very close" on a deal to reauthorize Trade Adjustment Assistance (TAA). "We believe the gap between them is bridgeable," John Murphy, the Chamber's vice president of international affairs, told reporters at a news conference. 

"Congress Poised To OK Long-Delayed Free-Trade Deals," Investor's Business Daily, June 15, 2011

Congress is "within striking distance" of passing long-delayed free-trade deals with Panama, Colombia and South Korea that could boost jobs and economic growth, Chamber of Commerce officials said Wednesday. Some issues must still be hammered out with the White House, but Chamber President Tom Donohue was confident they will be resolved soon.

"Lawmaker Sees July House Vote on Trade Deals," Reuters, June 14, 2011

The House of Representatives could vote on long-delayed free trade agreements with South Korea, Colombia and Panama in July, a Republican lawmaker said on Tuesday. U.S. Representative Kevin Brady also said the House Ways and Means Committee would hold an informal work session next week on the three trade deals in anticipation of President Barack Obama sending formal implementing legislation. "The administration should send up the bills right after that non-markup and we would move right to the floor in July after our formal markup," Brady said.

"House Panel Plans Test Run Of Trade Deals Next Week," Dow Jones, June 14, 2011

A key U.S. House Republican on trade issues said Wednesday the Ways and Means committee will debate free trade agreements next week, putting pressure on the Obama administration to submit the deals to Congress. Talks between the White House and congressional leaders over approving pacts with South Korea, Colombia and Panama have been bogged down by a dispute between Republicans and Democrats over extending benefits to U.S. workers displaced by trade. But Rep. Kevin Brady (R., Texas), who chairs the Ways and Means trade subcommittee, said his panel will begin working on the deals with the hope the Obama administration submits the trade deals to Congress "right after" the committee action.

"TRADE: Let’s Make a Deal, Please!," National Journal, June 13, 2011

The stalled trade agreements with Colombia, Panama, and South Korea might get a jolt of life this week as Colombia prepares to meet the next deadline in the action plan intended to pave the way for the White House to sign off on the pact.

"Free-Trade Pact with South Korea would Help Iowa, Officials Say," Des Moines Register, June 9, 2011

State leaders on a trade mission to South Korea said Wednesday they see tremendous business opportunities for Iowa, but Congress must approve a free-trade agreement to take full advantage of the potential for profits.

"Deal with South Korea Opens Door for U.S.," Jacksonville Times-Union, June 8, 2011

Congressional ratification this year of a free trade agreement with South Korea would give United States businesses a bigger market for products and services in one of the world's economic powerhouses, the president of the Korea Economic Institute said Tuesday in Jacksonville.

"Visitors Tout Jacksonville's Korean Business Connections," Jacksonville Business Journal, June 8, 2011

Three South Korean affairs experts on Tuesday afternoon gave a glowing analysis of the Asia country’s economic rise and growing partnership with the United States.

"U.S. Pork Exports May Surge on Trade Deals, Group Says," San Francisco Chronicle, June 7, 2011

U.S. free-trade agreements with Colombia, Panama and South Korea will generate more than 10,000 U.S. jobs and add more than $770 million in pork sales annually, the National Pork Producers Council said.

 

"Korean Officials Promote Free Trade in Macomb County – Group Part of Effort to Pass Free Trade Agreement," Detroit News, May 27, 2011

Officials with the South Korean government visited Macomb County farms Thursday as part of an effort to urge Congress to pass legislation to implement a trade agreement with the Asian country. The Michigan Farm Bureau organized the visit for Jong-hyun Choi, Minister of Economic Affairs for the Korean Embassy in Washington, D.C. . . The Farm Bureau and the South Korean government want U.S. lawmakers to enact legislation to implement the U.S.-Korea Trade Agreement, or KORUS.

"Ties that Connect N.C. to East Asia." Charlotte Observer, May 27, 2011

What do an N.C. pig farmer and a South Korean ambassador have in common? A lot, and that's no joke. Last month, Han Duk-soo, South Korea's ambassador to the United States, and farmer John Langdon were a stark contrast as they tramped around Langdon's pig farm in Johnston County, aptly illustrating the adage that politics makes strange bedfellows. So does business.

"New Trade Pacts Seen as a Boost for Florida – Local Businesses may Gain through Increased Exports to Three Countries," Florida Today, May 27, 2011

Exporting aviation electronics to countries such as Colombia and South Korea isn't as big a deal for Southeast Aerospace as exporting to primary markets in Europe and elsewhere in South America. But the Melbourne company could benefit from pending trade pacts with those countries as Colombia fights a simmering drug war and South Korea updates its military aircraft.

"Governors Express Support for Trade Deals, TAA," The Hill, May 24, 2011

More support came rolling in Monday for Congress to move forward on three pending free trade agreements while reauthorizing a program that helps workers displaced by trade. In a letter to congressional leaders, 25 governors expressed support for all three trade agreements with Korea, Panama and Colombia and fast-track authority for President Obama to push the deals through Congress, while also endorsing a renewal of the Trade Adjustment Assistance (TAA) program, with the 2009 changes.

"Branstad, Other Governors Urge Passage of Trade Agreements," Des Moines Register, May 24, 2011

Gov. Terry Branstad is among 25 governors who have written President Obama and Congress, urging passage of three pending trade agreements with Colombia, Panama and South Korea. “With an increasingly competitive global economy, it is important for President Obama and Congress to enact the pending trade agreements,” said Branstad, who co-wrote the bipartisan letter with five other governors. “Trade is one of the best ways to grow our economy through high-paying jobs for American workers and increased opportunities for American farmers, ranchers and business owners.

"McDonnell: Trade Shows Promise," Richmond Times-Dispatch, May 17, 2011

Gov. Bob McDonnell returns from an 11-day overseas marketing trip today, bringing with him leads on expanding agricultural exports into growing Asian markets. "We believe that there will be, within the next couple weeks, some very specific releases that we will be able to provide, particularly in the agriculture-export area," McDonnell told reporters in a conference call Monday from Seoul, South Korea.

"Governor Meets with South Korean President," Richmond Times-Dispatch, May 16, 2011

Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell, traveling in Asia on an trade mission, met today with South Korean President Myung-Bak Lee, the governor's office said. In their meeting at the Blue House, South Korea's executive residence, the governor gave the South Korean leader a copy of a letter he sent to members of the Virginia congressional delegation in support of the Korean-U.S. Free Trade Agreement.

"SGA Supports State's Korean Trade Efforts," High Plains Journal, May 16, 2011

The Montana Stockgrowers Association commended Montana Senator and Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus for his tireless effort to achieve fair, science-based trade rules for U.S. beef trade with Korea. Baucus has received commitment from the Barack Obama administration, Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack, and U.S. Trade Representative Kirk for additional resources to promote the safety and quality of U.S. beef to Korean consumers and to ensure the full application of the U.S.-Korea beef protocol which calls for full access for U.S. beef in Korea.

"Clinton Pledges Early Action On Free Trade Agreements," Voice of America, May 12, 2011

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton says the Obama administration will soon send the U.S. Congress implementing legislation for free-trade agreements with Panama, Colombia and South Korea.  Action on the trade accords, reached during the Bush administration, has long been stalled.

"Korean Trade Deal gets Boost from Key Lawmaker," Des Moines Register, May 7, 2011

A trade agreement with South Korea that's expected to be a boon to the pork industry has cleared a key hurdle by winning the endorsement of the Senate Finance Committee chairman. Sen. Max Baucus, D-Mont., announced that he would support the bill after the Obama administration announced steps it was taking to increase beef exports to Korea.

"Connolly, McDonnell Urge Approval of Free Trade Agreement with Korea," Washington Post, May 6, 2011

Rep. Gerry Connolly is calling on Gov. Bob McDonnell (R) to emphasize the importance of a free trade agreement between the United States and South Korea to the high-tech community in Northern Virginia. Connolly’s statements come after a letter from McDonnell which had emphasized what the state’s agriculture industry could get out of such an agreement. The conversation takes place as McDonnell embarks on an 11-day mission to Asia, including a visit to Seoul.

"Trade Pacts Inch Forward – White House Tells Congress of Progress on Issues Holding Up Colombia, Korea Deals," Wall Street Journal, May 5, 2011

The White House notified Congress Wednesday that it was ready to begin talks on passage of trade agreements with South Korea, Colombia and Panama, after Colombia complied with the first stage of an action plan to improve labor rights in that country. The Obama administration at the same time pledged to seek talks with Seoul over lifting remaining restrictions on U.S. beef imports after the Korea trade pact is passed.

"South Korean Ruling Party Pushes EU Free Trade Deal through Parliament; US Deal Looms," Washington Post, May 5, 2011

South Korea’s ruling party rammed the country’s free trade agreement with the European Union through parliament amid an opposition boycott in a result that shifts focus to a still unratified deal with the United States.

"South Korea Ratifies EU Tree Trade Deal," Agence France Presse, May 5, 2011

South Korea's ruling party rammed the country's free trade agreement with the European Union through parliament amid an opposition boycott in a result that shifts focus to a still unratified deal with the United States.

"Obama Ready to Push Three Trade Deals in Congress," USA Today, May 5, 2011

The White House announced Wednesday that it is ready to finalize legislation for all three pending free trade agreements, delayed since they were negotiated during the Bush administration. U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk told lawmakers in a letter that the process should "commence without delay, so that we can work together to bring the benefits of this agreement home to American businesses, farmers, ranchers and workers."

"House Speaker Boehner: Hope To Pass 3 Trade Pacts Before Recess," Dow Jones, May 5, 2011

House Speaker John Boehner (R., Ohio) said Thursday he hoped the House of Representatives would approve the three outstanding free- trade agreements with Colombia, Panama and South Korea before the August recess. "We hope to have them finished before the August recess," Boehner said at a weekly news conference.

"Boehner: Stalled US Trade Deals Done by August," Agence France Presse, May 5, 2011

US House Speaker John Boehner said Thursday that he aims to approve stalled trade deals with Colombia, Panama and South Korea by August but needs President Barack Obama's help to do so.

"Baucus to Support Korea FTA after USTR Announces Beef Consultations," Inside US Trade, May 4, 2011

Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus (D-MT) this morning (May 4) announced that he will support the U.S.-Korea free trade agreement. His endorsement came after the administration agreed to seek consultations on beef market access with South Korea and increase funding to promote U.S. beef sales in South Korea. Before this morning, Baucus has threatened to vote against the Korea FTA due to his objections over beef. “As a result of today’s announcement on funding and consultations, Senator Baucus will support the Korea FTA as it moves through the Senate,” according to a press release issued by the Finance Committee.

"U.S. Ready to Consider Approval of Trade Deals," Dallas Morning News, May 4, 2011

U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk said Wednesday he was ready to begin negotiations with Congress that would lead to voting on long-stalled trade agreements with Colombia , Panama and South Korea. Kirk, the former Dallas mayor, has been reworking trade pacts inherited from the Bush administration. In a letter to senior lawmakers Wednesday, Kirk wrote that Colombia has made progress toward policing violence against labor union members, a longstanding concern of Democrats. Kirk’s progress was endorsed by Republicans as well as a key Senate Democrat, Max Baucus of Montana, whose committee is responsible for approving trade agreements.

"Gains on Colombia Send Trade Pacts to Congress," New York Times, May 4, 2011

Progress on a free trade deal with Colombia has cleared the way for the White House to seek Congressional approval of a package of trade agreements that includes pacts with South Korea and Panama, as Republicans have demanded. Obama administration officials said Wednesday that they expected technical discussions about the agreements to begin Thursday with Capitol Hill aides, the first step in the approval process.

"Obama Moves Forward on Trade," The Hill, May 4, 2011

U.S. trade officials on Wednesday cleared the way for Congress to vote on trade agreements with South Korea, Colombia and Panama. The Obama administration will send all three pending trade deals to Capitol Hill as early as Thursday to begin technical discussions, the first step in the process of ratifying the pacts.

"Obama Administration Moves Forward on Trade Deals," Miami Herald, May 4, 2011

After a two-year pause on trade, the Obama administration informed congressional leaders Wednesday that it's ready to negotiate legislation to implement free-trade agreements already reached with Colombia, Panama and South Korea.

"U.S. Clears Roadblocks on Colombia, Korea Trade Deals," Reuters, May 4, 2011

The Obama administration on Wednesday said it was prepared to begin work with Congress on a bill to implement a free trade agreement with Colombia, after initial steps by the Andean nation to address long-standing labor concerns. . . Separately, Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus said he had reached a deal with the administration that addressed his concerns with South Korea's remaining beef import restrictions, clearing the way for movement on that pact.

"Baucus Will Back Korea Trade Deal as U.S. Seeks Beef Talks," Bloomberg News, May 4, 2011

Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus said he will support a pending free-trade agreement with South Korea after the Obama administration said it will pursue talks with the Asian nation on beef sales.

"Baucus Strikes Trade Deal with South Korea for Cattle Ranchers," Billings Gazette, May 4, 2011

The White House has relented to Sen. Max Baucus' demands that beef get a better shake in free-trade talks with South Korea. The announcement Wednesday inches the United States closer to a trade deal that the White House estimates is worth more than $10 billion in U.S. merchandise sold to South Korea annually.

"State Eager for Approval of Tree Trade With S. Korea," Seattle Times, April 29, 2011

Four years after President George W. Bush reached a free-trade agreement with South Korea, Congress may at long last vote on it this summer — paving the way for duty-free Starbucks roasted coffee in Seoul and lower sticker prices on Hyundai sedans in the United States.

"McDermott Feels Confident U.S., Korea will Complete Trade Deal," The Hill, April 29, 2011

Despite a few kinks, Rep. Jim McDermott (D-Wash.) is confident the United States and Korea will complete their pending free trade agreement within the next several months.

"US Trade Representative Urges Congress to Move on S. Korea Trade Deal," Dow Jones, April 29, 2011

U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk said Thursday Congress should move forward with a vote on the free trade agreement with South Korea as discussions begin about a broader trade agenda.

"US Commerce Secretary Says 'Time is of the Essence' on US-SKorea Trade Deal," Washington Post, April 29, 2011

The U.S. commerce secretary is urging quick action on a U.S.-South Korea trade deal. Gary Locke says American companies will suffer if Washington and Seoul cannot act soon after a deal between South Korea and the European Union begins removing tariffs. Seoul and the EU have vowed to see their trade deal take effect on July 1.

"US-South Korea Free-Trade Pact Trails EU Agreement," Wall Street Journal, April 28, 2011

A European Union free-trade agreement won a key victory from South Korean lawmakers Thursday, further bolstering a proposed deal that U.S. Commerce Secretary Gary Locke said could put pressure on U.S. lawmaker to approve a similar package with South Korea. . . "The EU-Korea agreement takes effect on July 1 and so many of the same products that Americans want to sell to Korea will now come in at cheaper prices from Europe, which puts American companies at a disadvantage," Mr. Locke said. "The longer we wait, the longer that disparity."

"U.S. Failure on South Korea Trade Agreement Would Cede Market, Locke Says," Bloomberg News, April 28, 2011

U.S. Commerce Secretary Gary Locke said failure by Congress to pass a free-trade agreement with South Korea would hand an advantage to rivals such as Australian beef exporters. “We need to ratify this agreement as quickly as we can to make sure that our American beef producers have access without ending up losing to Australia,” Locke, President Obama’s candidate to be the next ambassador to China, said today in an interview in South Korea. 

"South Korea Wants to Buy North Carolina Pork," Raleigh News and Observer, April 27, 2011

Foreign diplomats in suits look a bit out of place amid the pig barns and swine lagoons on a Johnston County hog farm. But South Korean Ambassador Han Duk-soo counts himself a fan of American agriculture. He's eager to see the pork from John Langdon's Johnston farm wind up on plates in his home country. Such trade will take legislation from Congress, though, and Han is taking his lobbying efforts directly to the Americans who could benefit.

"Korea’s FTA Drive Hits High Gear, At Last," Wall Street Journal, April 27, 2011

Another high-profile Washington delegation – the third this month – is in Seoul to promote the free trade agreement between the two countries as it appears the finish line for a deal that has been officially in the works since 2006 is finally in sight.

 
"South Korean Envoy Urges Passage of Free Trade Pact to Boost Colorado," Denver Post, April 21, 2011

Passage of a U.S.-South Korea free- trade agreement could generate 6,247 jobs in Colorado and boost exports from the state, supporters said Wednesday. The Republic of Korea's ambassador to the U.S., Han Duk-Soo, lobbied for U.S. passage of the pact in remarks to the Metro Denver Economic Development Corp.

"Korean Ambassador Touts Free Trade Deal in Denver," CNBC, April 21, 2011

Urgency is growing for Congress to ratify a pending free trade deal with South Korea as Canada, Australia and the European Union forge their own agreements with the Asian nation, South Korea's ambassador to the U.S. said Wednesday. Ambassador Han Duk-soo has been touring the U.S. promoting the American agreement, which was reached in 2007 but still must be ratified by legislatures in both countries. . . "Agriculture will be one of the best beneficiaries of the Korea-U.S. agreement," Han said Wednesday at events with Sen. Mark Udall, D-Colo., and Colorado Agriculture Commissioner John Salazar. "It's urgent for us to implement this agreement as soon as possible."

"Report: Korean Trade Agreement will Help US Economy," The Hill, April 21, 2011

A free trade agreement with South Korea will break down trade barriers that will result in economic growth and more jobs in the United States, as well as helping American companies to better compete globally, according to a new report released Wednesday. The pending U.S.-Korea Free Trade Agreement (KORUS) will have positive effects across the U.S. economy, helping agricultural sectors such as pork producers along with insurance companies such as MetLife to expand, according to the report released by centrist think tank Third Way. 

"U.S. to Aid Japanese, Push Deal on Korea," Wall Street Journal, April 18, 2011

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton met with senior Japanese leaders Sunday to express sympathy with Japan's people and support for its economy after last month's earthquake and tsunami. Earlier, she reiterated the Obama administration's support for a free-trade deal with South Korea in meetings with officials in Seoul.

"In Seoul, Clinton Says US Committed to Passing Free Trade Pact with South Korea this Year," Washington Post, April 16, 2011

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, in an overnight stop in South Korea before heading to Japan Sunday, put more emphasis on economic connections than the security ties that tend to dominate the U.S.-South Korean diplomacy, a sign the two countries are for the moment content with their strategy for dealing with North Korea. In meetings with President Lee Myung-bak, Foreign Minister Kim Sung-hwan and an appearance before a business group, Ms. Clinton said the Obama administration is committed to pressing Congress to ratify the U.S.-South Korea free trade agreement this year.

"Obama Committed to South Korea Trade Deal: Clinton," New York Times, April 16, 2011

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said on Sunday that concluding a long-delayed free trade agreement with South Korea was a priority for the Obama administration, and it was committed to getting the deal donethis year.

"Clinton Pledges U.S.-Korea Trade Pact This Year," Wall Street Journal, April 16, 2011

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, in an overnight stop in South Korea before heading to Japan Sunday, put more emphasis on economic connections than the security ties that tend to dominate the U.S.-South Korean diplomacy, a sign the two countries are for the moment content with their strategy for dealing with North Korea. In meetings with President Lee Myung-bak, Foreign Minister Kim Sung-hwan and an appearance before a business group, Ms. Clinton said the Obama administration is committed to pressing Congress to ratify the U.S.-South Korea free trade agreement this year.

"Clinton Tells Koreans she is confident of FTA passage," The Hill, April 16, 2011

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton told Korea Foreign Minister Kim Sung-Hwan Saturday that she is confident the U.S.-Korea free trade agreement will pass the U.S. Congress after being stalled for four years.

"Clinton: South Korea-U.S. Trade Deal in 'Home Stretch,'" Reuters, April 16, 2011

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton flew to South Korea Saturday to reassure Seoul about the U.S. commitment to sealing a long-delayed trade deal and to coordinate strategy over the North Korea nuclear standoff.

"Clinton Pledges US-Korea Trade Pact this Year," CBS News, April 16, 2011

Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton said Sunday the Obama administration is determined to pass a free trade pact with South Korea this year and complete the largest such agreement for the United States since her husband was president.

"Clinton Discusses Free Trade Efforts in SKorea," Washington Times, April 16, 2011

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton used a brief stopover in South Korea to discuss joint efforts to ratify a free trade agreement and get North Korea back to nuclear disarmament talks. Clinton met with Foreign Minister Kim Sung-hwan on Saturday evening before planned talks early Sunday with President Lee Myung-bak. Clinton told Kim that she was "very encouraged and determined" to get the free trade agreement ratified. 

"Korea FTA Whips Set To Join Locke On Fact-Finding Trip Starting April 27," (Subscription required) Inside US Trade, April 15, 2011

Commerce Secretary Gary Locke will lead a congressional delegation to South Korea from April 27-29 that includes House Ways and Means trade subcommittee Chairman Jim McDermott (D-WA) as well as Reps. Dave Reichert (R-WA) and Joe Crowley (D-NY), according to an April 14 Commerce announcement.

"Centrist House Dems Push for Trade Action," The Hill, April 4, 2011

A group of centrist House Democrats is pushing for quick movement on three pending free-trade agreements. The New Democrat Coalition, in a letter sent to President Obama on Friday, signaled their belief that trade pacts with South Korea, Colombia and Panama would help break down barriers for American goods and services. “Time is of the essence,” the lawmakers wrote. “Other nations have not hesitated to move forward aggressively on their own trade-barrier reducing treaties. In the meantime, U.S. farmers, ranchers, manufacturers, and service providers will continue to face significant trade barriers and will be forced to adjust to rules that put us at a competitive disadvantage.”

"South Korean Ambassador Leads Delegation to FTBOA, OBS," Thoroughbred Times, April 1, 2011

South Korea’s ambassador to the U.S. visited the Florida Thoroughbred Breeders’ and Owners’ Association and Ocala Breeders’ Sale Co. offices on Tuesday, furthering a trade connection that has been prominent at OBS sales in recent years. . . “We’re blessed with Korea’s interest in our horses here in Florida,” said Richard Hancock, executive vice president of the Florida Thoroughbred Breeders’ and Owners’ Association. “Their involvement is particularly rewarding during these tough economic times."

"Trade Deal Seen as Boon to Florida," Pensacola News Journal, March 31, 2011

Time is running out to ratify a free-trade agreement between the United States and South Korea that would cut tariffs on American exports and further solidify Florida's place as the fourth-biggest exporting state, South Korea's ambassador said Wednesday.

"Trade Agreement would Give State Business a Boost," Tallahassee Democrat, March 31, 2011

Time is running out to ratify a free trade agreement between the U.S. and South Korea that would cut tariffs on American exports and further solidify Florida's place as the fourth-biggest exporting state, South Korea's ambassador said Wednesday.

"Post-Daewoo, GM Plasters Chevy in SK," Wall Street Journal, March 31, 2011

General Motors took a big gamble in South Korea at the start of March by getting rid of the brand name that was long familiar to Korean shoppers, Daewoo, in favor of its Chevrolet brand. So far, the transition is going smoothly, says Mike Arcamone, president of GM Korea. In the past four weeks, GM has re-outfitted its Korean dealers with Chevrolet signage and merchandising. More importantly, car inventory has rapidly shifted into Chevrolet-only product.

"US: S. Korea trade pact will bar imports from N. Korea," Associated Press, March 31, 2011

A senior U.S. official says a proposed U.S.-South Korean free trade agreement will not provide a back door for imports to the United States from communist North Korea.

"S. Korean Ambassador: Keep Selling Horses that Win Races," Ocala.com, March 30, 2011

The South Korean ambassador to the United States told Marion County horsemen Tuesday that they need do only one thing to increase their equestrian sales to his country's racing market: Keep selling horses that win Korean races. Ambassador Duk-soo Han and a group of other Korean diplomats stopped at the Florida Thoroughbred Breeders' and Owners' Association and Ocala Breeders Sales Complex to meet with industry officials as part of the group's tour of Florida. They also are here to advocate for ratification of a free trade agreement now being considered by Washington lawmakers. Han stopped at the facilities on his way to Tallahassee to meet Gov. Rick Scott and Florida Department of Agriculture officials.

"Correct Craft Receives Visit from Korean Ambassador," WaterSki Magazine, March 30, 2011

Correct Craft, Inc., manufacturer of Nautique boats, received a visit at its Orlando world headquarters from the honorable Han Duk-soo, Korean Ambassador to the United States. Ambassador Han met with Correct Craft President/CEO Bill Yeargin, Vice President Greg Meloon and Director of International Sales Dan Guthrie, to learn about Correct Craft’s business dealings with Korea and discuss ways Korea and Correct Craft can expand their relationship as a result of the US-/Korea Free Trade Agreement.

"Top House Democrat: Let's Finish Korea Trade Agreement by Memorial Day," The Hill, March 30, 2011

Rep. Sandy Levin (D-Mich.) said Tuesday that President Obama should press forward on a trade pact with South Korea, calling for Congress to approve that deal by Memorial Day. In a speech he said he hoped would be “provocative,” the ranking Democrat on the House Ways and Means Committee also said that the administration should only send up pending free-trade agreements (FTA) with Colombia and Panama when they are ready...

"Rep Levin: US-Korea Trade Pact Should Be Approved By End Of May," Dow Jones Newswires, March 30, 2011

U.S. policy makers need to embrace a more defined trade policy that includes greater enforcement and protection of workers in order to allow U.S. firms to compete against their foreign rivals, a top House Democrat said Tuesday. Rep. Sander Levin of Michigan, the top Democrat on the House Ways and Means Committee, said the pending trade agreement between the U.S. and South Korea is an example of the new model of trade pact the U.S. must pursue. He called on the White House to immediately send the measure to Congress so that lawmakers can approve the deal by the end of May.

"U.S. Chamber Grassroots Campaign Visits Orlando to Highlight Benefits of Korea Free Trade Agreement," Financial Channel, March 29, 2011

On March 28 the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, joined by Korean Ambassador to the United States Han Duk-soo and local partners, visited Orlando to meet with the state’s government and business leaders to continue its nationwide grassroots effort to promote the job-creating benefits of the Korea-U.S. Free Trade Agreement (KORUS). “The way to meet the goal of doubling exports over the next five years is by passing this agreement,” said Tami Overby, vice president for Asia Affairs at the U.S. Chamber. “The Korea FTA is a no-cost way to create jobs and grow the economy.”

"U.S. Trade Rep: Small Business Exports to Fuel Job Recovery," Global Atlanta, March 29, 2011

(US Trade Representative Ron) Kirk led negotiations to revise the Korea trade deal in December. The pact is expected to be the first of the outstanding deals to go up for a vote in Congress. Mr. Kirk didn't hint when that might happen. "Every state in America will win when we pass this," he said, calling the Korea agreement a "$10 billion export opportunity" covering nearly most industries. He noted that the number probably underestimates the impact on the services sector, which is booming in Korea.

"Memphis-Based FedEx Ramps up Service to South Korea," The Commercial Appeal (Memphis), March 29, 2011

FedEx Express has dedicated a Boeing 777 freighter to nonstop service between Memphis and Seoul, South Korea. The company announced Monday that it has ramped up service to South Korea with four flights a week from the FedEx World Hub at Memphis International Airport. The new service puts FedEx in position to support growth of exports to South Korea, the seventh-largest U.S. trading partner, said Michael L. Ducker, executive vice president and chief operating officer of FedEx Express.

"Vilsack in St. Louis to Push Korean Trade Pact," BusinessWeek, March 28, 2011

Ratification of a U.S. trade agreement with South Korea would add tens of thousands of jobs, many of them in predominantly agricultural states like Missouri, Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack said Monday. But, he said, Congress needs to move quickly. Vilsack spoke outside an ADM grain terminal on the banks of the Mississippi River in St. Louis. He said he was hopeful Congress will ratify the South Korea trade agreement by July 1.

"Farm Bureau would Support Korea FTA if White House Sends it up Alone," Inside US Trade (Subscription required), March 22, 2011

American Farm Bureau Federation President Bob Stallman yesterday (March 21) said his organization will support the U.S.-Korea free trade agreement even if the White House sends it up to Congress for a vote without also moving forward the U.S.-Colombia or U.S.-Panama FTAs.In an interview, he explained that the Farm Bureau will support each of the three pending trade deals as they are submitted to Congress. At the same time, he stressed that he would not want the White House to move forward the Korea trade deal and then fail to do the same with the Colombia and Panama deals.

"U.S. Official Urges Congress to Act on Korea Trade Deal," Wall Street Journal, March 16, 2011

A senior Commerce Department official urged Congress Wednesday to act on a pending U.S. and Korea trade agreement while details on agreements with Colombia and Panama are being resolved. "Let us move with the product we have ready--which is Korea," Francisco J. Sanchez, Under Secretary of Commerce for International Trade, told a House subcommittee on commerce and trade. He predicted the trade agreements with Korea, Colombia and Panama will be completed by the end of the year. "The administration is committed to completing all the agreements this year," he said.

"Vilsack Urges Adoption of Trade Agreement," AgWeek, March 14, 2011

Citing the importance of agriculture exports, Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack is urging Congress to ratify the U.S.-South Korea agreement before July 1, when a European Union-South Korean free trade agreement goes into effect. he U.S.-South Korea agreement would expand farm exports to South Korea by $1.8 billion and support thousands of jobs in the United States, Vilsack said in a media call March 8, while helping to put U.S. agriculture ahead of competitors in Asia and strengthen strategic alliances there.

"Free Trade with Korea: Stuck in a Political Rut," Fiscal Times, March 11, 2011

Ratifying the U.S.-South Korea Free Trade Agreement is a no-brainer, advocates say. Here’s why:

  • It would boost annual U.S. gross domestic product by an estimated $10 billion to $12 billion.
  • The deal fits nicely with President Obama’s vow to double U.S. exports within five years.
  • The pact gradually would lead to $10 billion in exports and create 70,000 new jobs for Americans.
  • South Korea has robust labor unions. That means, unlike other free-trade agreements, this pact is acceptable to many trade unions.
"Obama Administration Urges Speedy Approval of Korea Trade Deal," Detroit News, March 10, 2011

U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk urged Congress to quickly approve the South Korea Free Trade Agreement — a deal he said would boost U.S. auto exports. Some in Congress — including House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Dave Camp, R-Midland — want to approve the Korea pact along with the long-stalled Panama and Colombia free trade agreements opposed by labor unions. "The Korea agreement is compelling enough that I think it merits approval on its own as soon as possible," Kirk told reporters today at a lunch sponsored by the Christian Science Monitor. "It is ready to go."

"Clinton Pushes Free, Fair Trade Agenda for APEC," Reuters, March 9, 2011

The United States hopes to finalize a free trade deal soon with South Korea, as well as agreements with Colombia and Panama, she said, adding the South Korean pact could be a model for cutting tariff restrictions and improving market access. "Then there are the benefits that cannot be expressed in dollars: a closer political and strategic partnership with a key ally that is cemented not only by shared security concerns but by closely integrated economies," Clinton said.

"Obama Officials Push for S. Korea Trade Pact," Associated Press, March 8, 2011

The Obama administration said Monday it's ready to send a highly coveted South Korea trade agreement to Congress for final approval but warned that delaying the deal would cause U.S. companies to miss out on jobs and export opportunities. The administration's top trade negotiator, Ron Kirk, sent a letter to lawmakers saying he's prepared to hold discussions with them, the first step before Congress can formally approve the agreement. In the letter, obtained by The Associated Press, Kirk said he hopes talks can begin "without delay."

"White House Presses for Korea Trade Pact," Wall Street Journal, March 8, 2011

U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk on Monday appealed to congressional leaders to begin work "without delay" toward ratifying a free-trade deal with South Korea, even as Republican leaders continued to press to link such action with movement on trade pacts with Colombia and Panama. In a letter sent Monday to leaders of the House Ways and Means and Senate Finance committees, Mr. Kirk asked Congress to begin a process that would lead to a vote on the Korea pact this spring. 

"Trade Rep. Takes Step toward Submitting Korea FTA," The Hill, March 8, 2011

U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk on Monday informed the House Ways and Means Committee and Senate Finance Committee that his office has finished preparing the Korea free trade agreement for submission to Congress.

"USTR Ready to Discuss S. Korea Deal with Congress," Reuters, March 8, 2011

The Obama administration said on Monday it was ready to begin final talks with Congress on a bill to implement a free trade deal with South Korea, but it was silent on pacts with Colombia and Panama that top Republicans also want approved. U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk, in a letter to key members of Congress, said his office hoped to "commence without delay" talks on legislation to implement the U.S.-South Korea free trade agreement, which was signed in June 2007.

"Kirk Notifies Congress Korea Deal Ready for Drafting," National Journal, March 8, 2011

U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk notified members of Congress on Monday that the Obama administration has finished preparing the free-trade agreement with South Korea and is prepared to begin crafting a draft-implementing bill. The letter advances the trade pact one step closer to ratification and might ultimately put the Republican trade agenda to the test. Kirk urged lawmakers to begin the discussions “without delay,” in hopes of completing the ratification process this spring. (No link provided)

"House Dems Urge Passage of S. Korea Free-Trade Deal," Detroit News, March 8, 2011

Top House Democrats today urged quick passage of the South Korea Free Trade Agreement — a deal that could boost U.S. and Michigan exports. U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk told Congress today that the government has completed preparatory work and is ready to begin technical discussions on a draft bill that would implement the trade pact. "The Korea Free Trade Agreement is ready and should be acted upon," said Rep. Sander Levin, D-Royal Oak, ranking member on the House Ways and Means Committee. "The time frame, once the agreement is submitted, is set forth by law. There is no reason for delay."

"GOP Freshmen Call on Obama to Tee Up Trade Deals," Wall Street Journal, March 2, 2011

In a letter sent to President Barack Obama today, 67 of 87 freshman Republicans threw their heft behind efforts to pass trade-opening pacts with South Korea, Colombia and Panama, urging the administration to get the three deals teed up for passage by July 1.

"First-Term Republicans Press Obama on Trade Deals," Reuters, March 2, 2011

Sixty-seven freshmen Republican lawmakers swept into office with help from the Tea Party movement told President Barack Obama on Tuesday they wanted to work with him to approve long-delayed trade deals with South Korea, Panama and Colombia. "We are committed to working with you to develop a comprehensive trade agenda. We believe the first step in that process is to move forward on our agreements with Colombia, Panama and South Korea without delay," the lawmakers said in a letter.

"Branstad: President Obama’s Trade Goals Mesh with Mine," Des Moines Register, March 1, 2011

President Obama’s goal to increase U.S. exports by 100 percent in five years is consistent with Iowa’s objectives and critical for job creation, (Iowa) Gov. Terry Branstad said today while in route back home after meeting with congressional leaders. One of the most specific objectives that could help Iowa is a proposed free-trade agreement with South Korea, Branstad said. The agreement, which Obama announced in December, would be the largest such deal since the North American free Trade Agreement in 1993 with Canada and Mexico.

"Korean Ambassador Pushes Trade Pact at Packer Avenue Marine Terminal," WHYY/NPR Philadelphia, February 18, 2011

The Korean ambassador to the United States is in Philadelphia promoting the pending U.S. Korea Free Trade Agreement. The honorable Han Duk-soo spoke at the Packer Avenue Marine Terminal.  The docks hummed with activity around him and, if the trade agreement passes, he says that hum only will get louder. "I think this port of Philadelphia will benefit by increasing the trade and more exchanges of commodities from this port," he said. That's why the longshoreman's union backs the deal -- import and export increase means more work on the docks.  If the agreement passes, 95 percent of all tariffs between the U.S. and Korea would be eliminated within five years.

"Korean Ambassador To US Visits Philadlephia In Pitch For Trade Deal," CBS Philadelphia, February 18, 2011

South Korea’s ambassador to the US was in Philadelphia today, as part of a national tour to urge passage of a US-Korea trade agreement. The US Chamber of Commerce has been taking Korean ambassador Han Duk-soo around the country, joining in the call for a trade deal with South Korea. His latest stop was at the Packer Avenue Marine Terminal in South Philadelphia (above), where Hyundai and Kia automobiles were being unloaded. “I hope that we are almost at the finish line of passing this agreement through US Congress,” Han said.

"South Korea, US Sign Revisions to Free Trade Deal," Associated Press, February 10, 2011

South Korea and the United States have signed amendments to their landmark free trade agreement, paving the way for the deal to be voted on by lawmakers in both countries. The two governments exchanged documents signed by South Korean Trade Minister Kim Jong-hoon and U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade said in a statement Thursday.

"South Korea Free Trade Agreement Should Reach Congress by March," The Hill, January 28, 2011

Congress could get the final language on the South Korea free trade agreement to consider for debate as early as March. Once the legal language is completed the Obama administration will release the agreement to the public next month and then it will be sent to Capitol Hill for ratification shortly thereafter, the Wall Street Journal first reported on Thursday.

"U.S.-South Korea Trade Deal Inches to Final Approval," Reuters, January 27, 2011

South Korea and the United States have finalized the text of a free trade deal, the trade ministry in Seoul said, clearing another hurdle for the ratification of the controversial agreement. The trade ministry said in a statement the two countries plan to officially sign the document in the middle of next month, before sending it to their respective legislatures for final approval to end years of negotiations. U.S. President Barack Obama on Tuesday called on Congress to pass the deal "as soon as possible," as Washington strives to enact the agreement before a rival trade pact between Seoul and the European Union comes into force on July 1.

"Negotiators Finalize Korea-FTA Language," Wall Street Journal, January 27, 2011

Congressional debate on the proposed South Korea free-trade deal could begin as soon as March now that the final, legal language of the agreement is set, people familiar with the process said Thursday. The agreement, which includes supplemental legal language on auto tariffs, will be released to the public next month. President Barack Obama is expected to send the pact to Congress for ratification soon afterward.

"Obama Urges Quick Approval of Korea Trade Deal," Reuters, January 26, 2011

President Barack Obama on Tuesday called on Congress to pass a free trade agreement with South Korea "as soon as possible," but offered no timetable for action on two other pacts with Panama and Colombia. The South Korea "agreement has unprecedented support from business and labor, Democrats and Republicans, and I ask this Congress to pass it as soon as possible," Obama said in his annual State of the Union speech.

"Congress Urged to Expedite Pending Trade Deals," Financial Times, January 26, 2011

Congress should consider all three pending US free trade agreements – with South Korea, Colombia and Panama – in the next six months, the top Republican lawmaker responsible for tax and trade policy in the House of Representatives has said.

"Lawmakers Press Forward with Free Trade Agreements," The Hill, January 26, 2011

Republican and Democratic lawmakers expressed their willingness to take action on free trade agreements with South Korea, Panama and Brazil after President Obama addressed a joint session of Congress on Tuesday night. House Ways and Means ranking member Sander Levin (D-Mich.) said the implementation language of the South Korean free trade agreement can be set up in a month or two. 

"Korean Ambassador Stumps in L.A. for Free Trade Agreement," Southern California Public Radio, January 25, 2011

South Korea’s ambassador to the United States, Han Duk-soo, says a proposed free trade agreement between the two countries would create 70,000 jobs in the U.S. The trade proposal - still to be approved by Congress - has supporters and detractors in organized labor.

"Ford Asks Congress to Approve U.S.-Korea Free Trade Agreement," Detroit News, January 25, 2011

Ford Motor Co. called on Congress today to approve the U.S.-Korea Free Trade Agreement after the automaker won changes last month to the agreement. Stephen Biegun, vice president for International Governmental Affairs at Ford, will tell the House Ways and Means Committee that "we at Ford have worked diligently over the past three years to reach a point where we could confidently say the U.S.-Korea FTA will help open, what has been to date, the most closed automotive market in the world. "As such, I am pleased to say, on behalf of Ford Motor Co., that we strongly encourage the Congress to approve this agreement."

"South Korean-U.S. Trade Agreement Called ‘Win-Win,’" Long Beach Press-Telegram, January 25, 2011

The South Korean Ambassador to the United States said Monday that a pending South Korean-United States trade agreement is a win-win situation for both countries. The South Korea Free Trade Agreement - the biggest bilateral trade agreement the U.S. has negotiated since the North American Free Trade Agreement - is expected to boost exports of goods to South Korea by as much as $11 billion, according to the independent U.S. International Trade Commission.

"GOP Calls For Quick Action on Free Trade Pacts," Associated Press, January 25, 2011

Rep. Dave Camp, the House Republican charged with overseeing trade policy, said Tuesday that Congress should act on all three pending free trade agreements within the next six months. Camp, who chairs the Ways and Means Committee, told a hearing that completion of the trade deals with South Korea, Colombia and Panama was "a sure-fire way to create American jobs by growing U.S. exports of goods and services."

"Business Groups Call for Passage of Stalled Free Trade Agreements," Wall Street Journal, January 25, 2011

Warning that the U.S. is being left behind in the global marketplace, business groups called Tuesday for President Barack Obama to finally seek congressional approval for the three trade agreements he inherited from the previous administration. While deals inked in 2007 with South Korea, Colombia and Panama continue to await a vote, the U.S. is losing competitiveness as those countries move forward on trade pacts with the European Union and others, business representatives told the House Ways and Means Committee.

"US Lawmaker Seeks Deadline for Trade Deals," Agence France Press, January 25, 2011

A senior US lawmaker called Tuesday for Congress to consider free trade deals with South Korea, Panama and Colombia within six months, saying they will boost the economic recovery. President Barack Obama's administration has set a goal of ratifying the long-delayed free trade agreement with South Korea by July, but has said it needs more time to build support for the deals with the Latin American nations.

"Roberts: Pending Free Trade Agreements Should be Approved," WIBW Radio - Topeka KS, January 25, 2011

Senator Pat Roberts today joined U.S. Senator Mike Johanns of Nebraska, in introducing a resolution expressing that it is in the security, economic and diplomatic interests of the United States to immediately implement the Korea Free Trade Agreement, Colombia Trade Promotion Agreement and the Panama Trade Promotion Agreement.

"On South Korea Trade Deal, Obama and Chamber are on Same Side," Los Angeles Times, January 24, 2011

On the eve of President Obama's expected push for American competitiveness in his State of the Union speech, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce kicked off a lobbying campaign in Los Angeles to push the U.S.-Korea Free Trade Agreement.

"US, South Korea Officials to Continue Work on Final Text of Trade Deal," Wall Street Journal, January 18, 2011

U.S. and South Korean officials plan to meet this week to continue working out the final text of the free-trade agreement, following last month's breakthrough on the long-stalled pact between the two countries. Wendy Cutler, assistant U.S. trade representative, will meet Thursday and Friday with South Korean Deputy Trade Minister Choi Seok-young in Los Angeles, during the annual meeting of the U.S.-Korea Business Council.

"White House Pushing Approval of South Korea Trade Deal by July," The Hill, January 13, 2011

U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk said Thursday that the Obama administration is working towards having the South Korea trade deal approved by mid-summer. Speaking at a panel discussion hosted by the centrist think tank Third Way, Kirk said the administration’s goal is to have the agreement voted on by Congress before July 1 — the date a trade deal between South Korea and the European Union (EU) goes into effect." You can reasonably surmise that our goal is to have this agreement presented to Congress, go through hearings and voted on before the EU-KORUS deal goes into effect July 1,” Kirk said. 

"US Eyes Korea Trade Deal Approval by July – Kirk," Reuters, January 13, 2011

President Barack Obama's administration hopes to win congressional approval of a free trade agreement with South Korea before July, U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk said on Thursday. "Everything we're doing in terms of finalizing the text with Korea, working with (congressional) committees is with that July 1 goal in mind," Kirk said during a discussion on the pact hosted by Third Way, a Washington-based policy group. The July 1 date is key because that's when a rival trade agreement between South Korea and the European Union takes force, Kirk told the group.

"US Wants S. Korea Trade Pact by July," Agence France Press, January 13, 2011

The chief US trade negotiator voiced hope Thursday that Congress would approve a free trade agreement with South Korea before a similar pact between Seoul and the European Union takes effect July 1. President Barack Obama's administration last month sealed a deal to end 95 percent of tariffs between the United States and South Korea, revising a 2007 pact negotiated under president George W. Bush that went nowhere in Congress. US Trade Representative Ron Kirk voiced hope that the revised deal would win approval from Congress by July 1 when a trade pact between the European Union and South Korea -- modeled in part on the original US text -- takes effect.

"Jarrett: Korea FTA is First Legislative Priority in Path to Compromise," The Hill, January 12, 2011

Senior White House adviser Valerie Jarrett told an audience at the Brookings Institution Wednesday that the first administration legislative priority in this Congress will be passage of the U.S.-South Korea free trade agreement, which the Obama administration renegotiated in December. She also outlined other areas of compromise with the GOP and did not reject Republican plans for deep spending cuts outright.

"S. Dakota to Reap Benefits in Pact with S. Korea," Sioux Falls Argus Leader, December 14, 2010

South Dakota agriculture producers stand to benefit from a newly sealed trade agreement with South Korea. The pact, which requires congressional approval, would be the largest since the North American Free Trade Agreement with Canada and Mexico in 1994. President Obama said the South Korean deal would support at least 70,000 American jobs.

"Huge S. Korea Market at Stake," Omaha World-Herald, December 13, 2010

Beef. It's what's for dinner in Korea, too. And there's a sizzling competition between the United States and Australia to serve up those short ribs and t-bones. At stake is a slice of a red-hot $1 trillion South Korean economy and the beef-hungry appetites of 49 million people.

"Kirk Wins Praise for South Korea Trade Deal," Dallas Morning News, December 12, 2010

The former Dallas mayor pulled off a trade deal this month with South Korea – his biggest achievement in 20 months in the Cabinet – but he could be tested even further in coming months as the administration pushes Congress to ratify the pact. "In basketball parlance, you finally put me in the game. Let me play. This was what I came to do," he said Friday, in his office across the street from the White House. "I don't want to leave now."
The deal would open Korea's market to U.S. carmakers, and phase out tariffs on U.S. beef over 15 years. The administration says it will boost U.S. exports by $11 billion a year and spur job growth.

"Trade Deal could Boost Meat Exports to South Korea," Rochester (MN) Post-Bulletin, December 11, 2010

An unusual split in the labor movement has developed over President Obama's proposed free-trade pact with South Korea, with two powerful unions backing the deal — a development that experts say will make congressional ratification far more likely. The United Auto Workers are pleased that the agreement will increase auto exports to Korea, and the United Food and Commercial Workers are encouraged that the pact will bolster meat exports to Korea. Both have embraced the deal, which is a modified version of an agreement that President George W. Bush first negotiated in 2007.

"South Korea Free Trade Deal Could Be Boon For GM," National Public Radio, December 10, 2010

The Obama administration and the South Korean government have reached a free trade deal that could offer a potential big market for General Motors and other American car companies. If approved, it would be the second largest agreement after the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), which passed nearly two decades ago. Administration officials say the trade pact could mean billions of dollars and hundred of thousands of new jobs.

"U.S. Union Backing Boosts Korea Trade Pact," New York Times, December 9, 2010

An unusual split in the labor movement has developed over President Obama’s proposed free-trade pact with South Korea, with two powerful unions backing the deal — a development that experts say will make Congressional ratification far more likely. The United Automobile Workers are pleased that the agreement will increase auto exports to Korea, and the United Food and Commercial Workers are encouraged that the pact will bolster meat exports to Korea. Both have embraced the deal, which is a modified version of an agreement that President George W. Bush first negotiated in 2007.

"Caterpillar: Korean Trade Pact Means Area Jobs," Peoria Journal Star, December 7, 2010

Caterpillar Inc. wasn't just thinking of more sales when it expressed excitement over the reworked free trade agreement between the United States and South Korea. It was thinking job growth, including here in central Illinois, based on the company's experience with other free trade agreements. "Our experience, most recently with the free trade agreements with Chile and Australia, is that the growth in exports led directly to growth in jobs, including in the Peoria area and all of central Illinois," said spokeswoman Bridget Young, noting that more than half of the products made in East Peoria are exported.

"Obama, Lee outlined U.S.-Korea trade deal in Seoul, official says" Washington Post, December 6, 2010

The outlines of the Korea-U.S. trade deal announced last week were brokered in a head-to-head meeting between President Obama and South Korean leader Lee Myung-bak in Seoul early last month. There the two leaders agreed to accommodate the domestic political problems each faced over the agreement, according to a senior administration official. It was in that session, the official said, that Obama made clear to Lee that he would not put the deal before Congress without substantial new concessions from Korea for the U.S. auto industry. 

"U.S. Trade Pact Set With South Korea via Auto Tariff Deal," New York Times, December 4, 2010

American negotiators have completed a free-trade agreement with South Korea that will eliminate most tariffs on exports and solidify one of the nation’s most significant alliances in Asia, the Obama administration said on Friday. The agreement, which requires approval by the legislatures in both countries, is a first for the administration and would be the largest trade accord since the North American Free Trade Agreement took effect in 1994.

"After Attack, South's Talks with U.S. Accelerated," Wall Street Journal, December 4, 2010

Trade talks between South Korea and the U.S. got a jolt after North Korea's recent attack of a South Korean island underscored the security reasons for the free-trade deal. The U.S. and South Korea announced on Friday in the U.S., early Saturday Korea time, they'd agreed to modify certain provisions of the free-trade pact the two countries originally forged in 2007. The changes improved the likelihood for the pact to get legislative ratification.

"White House announces Korean free trade deal" Politico, December 4, 2010

The White House announced Friday night that the United States and South Korea have reached agreement on a comprehensive free trade pact that is a major objective of American business but could meet significant opposition from liberal Democrats in Congress. The way was cleared for the deal after negotiators for the two nations reached a deal on cars, the last major obstacle to completing the agreement and sending it to Congress next year. 

"U.S.-S. Korean trade deal is struck" Detroit Free Press, December 4, 2010

U.S. and South Korean negotiators struck key agreements announced Friday that addressed concerns raised by Detroit's automakers that had threatened to scuttle a deal that, in terms of tariff cuts alone, could be worth up to $11 billion in overall American exports and 70,000 jobs.

"U.S., South Korea Reach Deal to Rework Trade Agreement," Bloomberg/BusinessWeek, December 3, 2010

The U.S. and South Korea reached an agreement to change automobile provisions in a pending trade deal, winning support from Ford Motor Co. and lawmakers.

"Obama Administration Reaches Breakthrough on South Korea Trade Talks," USA Today, December 3, 2010

The three-year-old free trade agreement with South Korea finally may be ready for Congressional passage. The Obama administration said today that their negotiators reached a deal with their South Korean counterparts on auto imports, exports and tariffs, the major stumbling block that had prevented the president from signing a revised treaty during a visit to Seoul last month.

"U.S., South Korea Agree on Automakers' Trade Issues," Detroit Free Press, December 3, 2010

U.S. and South Korean negotiators struck key agreements announced Friday that addressed concerns raised by Detroit’s automakers which had threatened to scuttle a deal that, in terms of tariff cuts alone, could be worth as much as $11 billion in overall American exports and hundreds of thousands of jobs.

"U.S., South Korea Complete Free-trade Deal" Washington Post, December 3, 2010

U.S. and South Korean negotiators agreed Friday to a free-trade deal that the Obama administration hopes will increase American exports by billions of dollars annually and create momentum for a broader push on free trade in the coming year. The pact is the administration's first major foray into the arena of free-trade politics, and officials said it may be followed by efforts to have Congress approve pending deals with Panama and Colombia and reinvigorate the larger Doha round of global trade talks.

"U.S., Korea Agree on Free-Trade Pact" Wall Street Journal, December 3, 2010

The U.S. and South Korea struck a deal to revive a broad pact that could drop barriers on a wide array of goods and services, setting the stage for what would be the biggest nation-to-nation trade deal since the 1994 North American Free Trade Agreement. Negotiators for the U.S. and South Korea—the world's No. 1 and No. 12 economy, respectively—broke a three-year impasse over the bilateral agreement early Friday by reaching accord on a deal to gradually lower U.S. tariffs on Korean automobiles.

"U.S., South Korea reach trade deal," The Hill, December 3, 2010

The Obama administration announced Friday it had agreed to a trade deal with South Korea, a development certain to set off a major new debate in Congress next year. The U.S. secured concessions from South Korea on auto tariffs that won praise for the revised deal by Ford Motor Co., previously the agreement’s most vocal opponent. It also won the support of Rep. Sandy Levin (D-Mich.) the lead House Democrat on trade issues, who in a statement said the deal would help reverse a lopsided trade with South Korea on automobiles.

"U.S., South Korea reach free trade deal – Agreement would be the largest U.S. trade deal since NAFTA in 1994," MSNBC, December 3, 2010

The U.S. and South Korea have reached an agreement on a free trade deal sought by the Obama administration to boost American exports and create tens of thousands of U.S. jobs in the largest trade pact in more than a decade. Negotiators reached a deal on outstanding issues related to the automobile industry, which have been a sticking point in the talks, said a person close to the discussions. 

"Business Groups To Welcome U.S.-Korea Trade Deal," Forbes, December 3, 2010

The reported deal between the U.S. and South Korea on a trade agreement that has been stalled for three years may be the ray of light the U.S. business community has been hoping for on trade.

"Korea Rejects Ford Claims on Closed Auto Market," Detroit News, November 4, 2010

The Korean Embassy today rejected Ford Motor Co's contention that its market is closed to import vehicles. Ford is running advertisements in newspapers in Michigan, Illinois, Ohio and Missouri — as well as Washington, D.C., papers — today calling on the U.S. Trade Representative to negotiate changes to the Korea Free Trade Agreement to boost U.S. auto exports. "The Korea auto market has continued to open to foreign imports," the Korean Embassy statement said. The embassy noted that the market share for imported passenger cars in 2008 was 7.2 percent - and that imports have been growing by an average of 41 percent a year since 2000.

"Obama, Lee Express Hopes of Completing Trade Deal at G-20 Summit in Seoul," Bloomberg News, November 3, 2010

Presidents Barack Obama and Lee Myung Bak expressed hopes to use next week’s talks at the Group of 20 summit in Seoul to make progress on completing a free-trade agreement between the U.S. and South Korea. “If we can reach a satisfactory agreement on the key issues for American workers, we will have a deal,” the White House said in a statement yesterday. Lee, speaking to reporters in Seoul today, said he discussed the FTA when he telephoned Obama to talk about next week’s G-20 meeting in South Korea.

"Lee Optimistic SKorea, US Can Finalize Trade Deal," ABC News, November 3, 2010

President Lee Myung-bak expressed confidence Wednesday that South Korea and the United States can finalize a long-stalled free trade deal though offered no clues about narrowing key differences on beef and autos ahead of a meeting with President Barack Obama. The two countries, key security allies for decades, concluded 10 months of negotiations in April 2007 for a landmark deal to slash tariffs and other barriers to commerce and signed it three months later.

"Obama Assures South Korea on Trade: White House," Reuters, November 2, 2010

President Barack Obama personally assured his South Korean counterpart about prospects for a long- delayed free trade pact that his administration is working hard to advance, the White House said Tuesday. "The president underscored that we hope to use the next week to make progress toward an agreement. If we can reach a satisfactory agreement on the key issues for American workers, we will have a deal," the White House said in a statement of President Lee Myung-bak's call to Obama Monday.

"South Korea Trade Deal Near," Detroit News, October 27, 2010

Detroit —The long-awaited trade agreement with South Korea should be finalized in time for President Barack Obama's visit to the G-20 summit in Seoul, South Korea in early November, Commerce Secretary Gary Locke said Tuesday.

"Korean Trade Pact Essential to the US," The Australian, October 25, 2010

US unemployment remains high. China is ever more confident and has displaced America as the No 1 trading partner with leading East Asian states. How have the Obama administration and Democratic congress responded to these challenges? By retreating economically from Asia. The US-South Korea Free Trade Agreement sits unratified in Washington. This policy was remarkable for both its economic and geo-strategic folly. Thankfully, US trade policy is undergoing a reset. When he met South Korean President Lee Myung-bak at the last G20 Summit, President Barack Obama advocated reviving the agreement. He hopes to wrap up outstanding issues by the next G20 meeting in November, to be held in Seoul. Still, the path to ratification is not clear. Leading congressional Democrats remain opposed, while Seoul refuses to renegotiate the accord. Ratification is a must. The South possesses one of the world's largest economies and is among the top dozen trading nations. 

"South Korea Free Trade Agreement Key to Prosperity and Security," The Daily Caller, October 20, 2010

Washington should be expanding American investment and trade opportunities throughout East Asia.  The starting point should be ratifying the FTA with the Republic of Korea. . . . South Korea possesses one of the world’s largest economies — number 13 at last count — and is among the top dozen trading nations.  Total bilateral trade between the U.S. and the ROK ran about $85 billion in 2008.  The seventh largest merchandise trading partner of the U.S., the ROK is a major importer of aircraft, cereals, chemicals, machinery, and plastics.  Even a small expansion of U.S.-ROK trade would offer a significant benefit for America’s economy.

"South Korean Ambassador Pushes Free Trade in S.F.," San Francisco Chronicle, October 20, 2010

South Korea's ambassador to the United States met with electronics manufacturers in San Francisco on Tuesday as part of a campaign designed to persuade Congress to approve a free trade agreement between the two nations. "Don't confuse us with China, Japan and Germany," Ambassador Han Duk-soo said after meeting with the Consumer Electronics Association at the Fairmont Hotel.

"US Chamber Calls for Urgency on S. Korea Trade Deal," BusinessWeek, October 15, 2010

Time is running out for South Korea and the United States to reach a compromise that can finally seal their stalled free trade agreement ahead of a meeting between their presidents next month, an official with the top U.S. business lobby said Friday. South Korea and the U.S. reached their landmark trade deal, which would slash tariffs and other barriers on industrial goods and services, in April 2007 and signed it three months later. The agreement, however, has made little progress since then amid changes in government in both countries, the worldwide financial crisis and U.S. demands that South Korea address its surplus in auto trade and allow more access to American beef.

"S Korea Ambassador: Confident Can Reach US Trade Deal By G-20," Wall Street Journal, September 30, 2010

South Korea's ambassador to the U.S. expressed confidence Thursday that the two countries can resolve differences on their free trade pact by the Group of 20 summit in November, but predicted tough talks on beef. Han Duk-soo, a former prime minister and finance minister of South Korea, said most of the remaining U.S. concerns about access for beef and autos are based on a "lack of clear understandings." But during a discussion with Democratic lawmakers Rep. Adam Smith of Washington and Rep. Henry Cuellar of Texas, Han vowed that his government is "ready and willing" to finding a solution on those issues.

"Washington Emissary in Town — U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk brings a simple message to South Florida: Increasing exports will create jobs," Miami Herald, September 24, 2010

When U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk contemplates the nation's 9.6 percent unemployment rate, he thinks exports and their potential to create jobs. “There are green shoots of economic recovery, but as you know none of that matters when you have people desperately looking for jobs,'' Kirk told a group of international business leaders Thursday at the Greater Miami Chamber of Commerce. The meeting was part of a two-day trip to South Florida to push export-led job creation and the potential of pending free trade agreements with Korea, Panama and Colombia to stimulate economic recovery.      

"South Koreans Increasingly Moving Money into Los Angeles and State — The city's large population of ethnic Koreans, efforts by California and a change in U.S. immigration policy have helped make L.A. a magnet for investment," Los Angeles Times, September 22, 2010

The entrepreneurs in Seoul wanted to cash in on the growing health craze with a worldwide restaurant chain featuring a modern twist on traditional Korean cuisine. The location of their flagship store was a no-brainer — Los Angeles. They viewed the city as wealthy, multicultural and complete with a ready-made Korean American clientele.

"Cargill Says South Korea, Colombia Trade Agreements Would Create U.S. Jobs," Bloomberg News, September 21, 2010

The approval of pending free-trade accords with South Korea, Colombia and Panama would help create jobs in the U.S., said agricultural trader Cargill Inc., the largest closely held company in the U.S. “Cargill absolutely supports the free-trade agreements,” Devry Boughner, director of international business relations for Cargill, said today in a telephone interview. “The sense of urgency comes around the state of the economy. Trade is about creating American jobs.” 

"Opportunity Hangs On Korea Deal," Hartford Business Journal, September 19, 2010

For Torrington-based Dymax, South Korea represents a major business opportunity.  The maker of adhesive sealants and light curing equipment, which employs nearly 200 people, has been exporting to the East Asian country for years and has seen its output there grow exponentially to nearly $3 million. The company is so optimistic about its future business there that it opened a new office in Seoul earlier this year to help strengthen its sales force. 

"Exports Called Key in Lifting Economy," Seattle Times, September 17, 2010

U.S. Commerce Secretary Gary Locke is returning to his home state Friday to discuss progress on the president's National Export Initiative, which aims to double American exports over the next five years and create millions of jobs. Exports are a key to improving the U.S. economy and weaning it away from excessive borrowing and consumption, Locke and other members of the Export Promotion Council said in a report released Thursday. Exports also help drive the economy in Washington state, which depends more heavily on trade than any other state.

"Obama Turns Focus to Trade as Way to Encourage Economic Growth," Bloomberg News, September 16, 2010

President Barack Obama’s export advisory group, headed by Boeing Co. Chief Executive Officer James McNerney and Xerox Corp. CEO Ursula Burns, released a report today recommending the government step up trade promotion and complete work on free trade agreements. Less than two months before congressional elections, with the economy a top issue for voters, Obama is turning his attention to trade, highlighting his goal of doubling U.S. exports over five years as a driver of economic growth. 

"Schwarzenegger Urges Early Ratification of Korea-U.S. FTA," Yonhap News, September 15, 2010

California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger strongly urged his country Wednesday to quickly implement a free trade agreement (FTA) with South Korea, saying a failure to do so will be the worst thing the United States can do.

"U.S. Wineries Push for Trade Pact With Korea," Roll Call, September 15, 2010

After staying on the sidelines in recent years, the domestic wine industry is preparing for an autumn lobbying push that will try to build support among Members for a revised free-trade deal with South Korea.

"South Korea May Increase Imports of Beef, Pork in 2011, USDA Unit Predicts," Bloomberg News, September 13, 2010

South Korea, the fourth-largest buyer of U.S. beef, may boost imports by 24 percent next year as demand recovers after the outbreak of mad cow disease in 2003, a unit of the U.S. Department of Agriculture said. U.S. beef exports to South Korea may jump to 136,000 metric tons (299.8 million pounds) in 2011, up from an estimated 110,000 tons this year, the USDA’s Foreign Agricultural Service said today in a report on its website. The country’s total beef imports will climb 6.3 percent to 340,000 tons in 2011, up from 320,000 tons this year, the FAS said.

"Va. Businesses Urged to Expand Exports for Growth," Businessweek, September 13, 2010

Business leaders from across Virginia were encouraged at a statewide conference on Monday to expand exports to help create jobs and increase their enterprises. "If you're going to grow, you're going to have to take advantage of these export opportunities," said U.S. Sen. Mark Warner. Warner hosted the Richmond summit so Virginia businesses could discuss ways to expand exports to emerging nations that have a surging middle class. "They want our jobs ... they also want our stuff," he said. Warner, who took trade missions to Europe, Asia and Mexico during his time as governor, told attendees that Virginia has more than 5,000 companies that export goods or services, most of which have no more than 500 employees. That means nearly 3.5 percent of jobs in the state are related to exports, better than the national average.

"Korean Free Trade Agreement has Strong Support," California Farm Bureau, September 8, 2010

On the world export market for California agricultural products, South Korea comes in with a high ranking of No. 5 with $500 million annually in farm imports. But the potential exists for a substantial boost in those numbers if a previously negotiated free trade agreement is ratified by the two nations' governments.

"Napa Vintner Lee Urges Fellow Koreans to Swap Soju for Cabernet," Bloomberg News, September 7, 2010

Lee Hi-Sang, a South Korean businessman who owns Napa Valley’s Dana Estates, didn’t take his first sip of wine until he was in his mid-30s. Since then, he’s sought to ensure other Koreans don’t wait that long. Lee, who built his fortune in the flour-mill industry, took to wine immediately and made it his mission to boost the popularity of Napa vintages in his home country. He began distributing California wine more than a decade ago and purchased Dana Estates in 2005. “I’d like to change our culture,” Lee, now 64, said during lunch at his winery, whose $275-a-bottle Cabernet has earned a perfect 100-point score from critic Robert Parker. “I thought I would introduce this good drink to Korea.”

"Schwarzenegger Bound for Asia on Trade Mission," San Francisco Chronicle, September 7, 2010

Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger is leading a trade mission to Asia this week to promote California products and to help secure what he said could amount to billions of dollars in business for companies in the state. The six-day trip to China, Japan and South Korea is the governor's first trade mission in more than three years. He plans to tour the company making components for the eastern span of the Bay Bridge and ride high-speed trains in all three countries. Business leaders from the Bay Area, Los Angeles and other parts of the state are joining Schwarzenegger, who leaves Thursday and returns Sept. 15.

"Entertainment Industry Meets with Ambassador Han Duk-soo to Discuss Benefits of the U.S.-Korea Free Trade Agreement," Entertainment Industry Coalition Press Release, September 2, 2010

A broad coalition of entertainment industry workers, creators, producers, and trade associations known collectively as the Entertainment Industry Coalition (EIC) today met with Korean Ambassador Han Duk-soo to discuss their shared interest in swift ratification of the U.S. Free Trade Agreement with the Republic of Korea. The EIC will launch a campaign to educate members of Congress, particularly the California delegation, about the benefits of the U.S.-Korea FTA to the entertainment sector of the U.S. economy.

"Support Trade Pact, Korea Urges," The News Tribune, September 1, 2010
South Korea’s ambassador to the United States, on a 50-city U.S. tour promoting a still-unratified Korea-U.S. trade pact, brought his roadshow to Tacoma on Tuesday, urging Tacomans to support the treaty when it goes before Congress.
 
"Take 5: Han Duk-soo — Ambassador Pushes Pluses of Korea-U.S. Free Trade Deal," Lansing State Journal, August 30, 2010

The Korea-U.S. free trade agreement offers one of the best opportunities to create U.S. jobs by providing new export opportunities for American manufacturers, farmers and small- and medium-sized companies.

"Opponents Of Korea FTA Auto Provisions Explore Possible Benchmarks," Inside U.S. Trade, August 27, 2010

Stakeholders opposed to the automotive provisions of the U.S.-Korea free trade agreement are informally exploring how they could define effective market access into the Korean auto market and how they could work to ensure that U.S. auto companies enjoy that access under the FTA, sources said. They are also exploring whether there should be a new auto-specific safeguard that could be invoked if Korean auto exports to the U.S. reach a certain threshold level, sources said.

"A Plan for Jobs," The Tonawanda News, August 27, 2010

Manufacturing isn’t dead, but it can’t help America pull out of its economic slump and create jobs unless there’s an attitude adjustment in Washington, D.C.

"Korean Trade Pact Would Boost Spuds, Dairy, USDA Official Says," Capital Press, August 27, 2010

Idaho agricultural producers would benefit from a U.S.-Korean Free Trade Agreement, a USDA official said during a visit to the state. Potato and dairy products -- two of Idaho's top agricultural commodities  -- would see significantly expanded market access under the proposed agreement, said Darci Vetter, USDA under secretary for farm and foreign agricultural services.

"Voters Seek Strengthened Manufacturing Sector, Poll Finds," The Hill, August 27, 2010

A new poll by the Association of Equipment Manufacturers shows that 90 percent of voters want Congress to pass legislation that "drastically increases manufacturing jobs." 

"U.S. Absence at Southeast Asia Trade Meeting Draws Criticsm," Bloomberg News, August 26, 2010

President Barack Obama , who became the first U.S. leader to meet with the 10-member bloc in November, has aimed to increase trade with Asia to help meet a January pledge to double exports in five years. Asean was the fourth-biggest market U.S. goods last year and fifth-largest trading partner.

"Korean Lawmakers in Atlanta: No More FTA Delay," Global Atlanta, August 24, 2010

South Korean and U.S. legislators should cast politics aside and focus on the economic benefits of ratifying a free trade agreement between their countries, Korean lawmakers said Aug. 20 in Atlanta.

"Crapo Calls for Increased Trade to Boost Jobs," The Hill, August 24, 2010

With the economy struggling to create jobs, Sen. Mike Crapo (R-Idaho) has urged congressional leaders to implement the pending free trade agreements with Colombia, Panama and South Korea that he says will save or create 380,000 jobs, according finding by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.

"State’s Exports Produce Revenue," Courier Post, August 23, 2010

Sending U.S.-made products to foreign nations is big business  in the state, generating tens of billions of dollars worth of export-related  revenue, a recent report says.

"South Korea Free Trade Pact Back on U.S. Agenda," Washington Post, August 23, 2010

The message may have been familiar recently when the local Chamber of Commerce took up a proposed free-trade agreement between South Korea and the United States.

"South Korean Ambassador Touts Free-Trade Pact," Pork News Source, August 23, 2010

The free-trade agreement with South Korea is again struggling for life, according to a Washington Post report. The agreement would be the most significant free-trade pact signed by the United States since the North American Free Trade Agreement with Mexico and Canada was approved in the mid-1990s.

"South Korean Envoy Lobbies for Trade Pact — At East Lansing Event, Official Says Jobs Would be Created," Lansing State Journal, August 20, 2010

The South Korean ambassador to the United States stressed the importance of passing a Korea-U.S. free trade agreement during his visit to Lansing on Thursday.

"South Korean Ambassador’s Local Visit," WLNS News, August 19, 2010

Better business relations and a new trade agreement were the big topics on a local visit by the South Korean's ambassador to the US. Ambassador Han Duk-soo is making the rounds in Michigan and looking to jumpstart support for a free trade agreement between his country and the United States.

"Business Roundtable Calls for Increase Trade to Save Economy," The Hill, August 19, 2010

The Business Roundtable on Thursday said recent indicators showing the economic recovery faltering should prompt Congress into expanding trade opportunities with other nations.

"Korean Official: Ratify Free Trade Pact," The Detroit News, August 19, 2010

The Korean ambassador to the United States urged Michigan business leaders Wednesday to endorse a long-stalled free trade agreement between the two countries, saying U.S. auto imports "can and should be increased a lot more."

"South Korean Ambassador Promotes Free Trade Agreement in Lansing," Lansing State Journal, August 19, 2010

The South Korean Ambassador to the United States stressed the importance of passing a Korea-U.S. free trade agreement during his visit to Lansing today.

"South Korean Ambassador to Meet Auto Executives," Detroit News, August 18, 2010

The South Korean ambassador to the United States will meet with top executives at Ford Motor Co. and Chrysler Group LLC today during a day-long visit to Detroit to discuss a contentious free trade agreement.

"Korean Ambassador Says U.S. Auto Imports Should Increase," Detroit News, August 18, 2010

The Korean ambassador to the United States urged Michigan business leaders to back approval of a long-stalled free trade agreement between the two countries, saying U.S. auto imports "can and should be increased a lot more."

"South Korean Ambassador Pushes for Free Trade Agreement," Sun-Times Media/Naperville Sun, August 18, 2010

Addressing Naperville Chamber of Commerce members Tuesday, South Korean Ambassador Han Duk-Soo urged Americans to support free trade between the two countries.

"South Korean Ambassador Visits Port of Tacoma Aug. 31," Tacoma Daily, August 18, 2010

Join a roundtable discussion with Ambassador Han Duk-Soo of South Korea Aug. 31 to talk about the Korean Free Trade Agreement. If approved by Congress, the Korean agreement would be the first U.S. free trade agreement with a major Asian economy and the largest trade deal since the 1993 North American Free Trade Agreement.

"Obama’s Free-Trade Goal Hits Roadblock," The Washington Times, August 18, 2010

Eight months after he called for action on a string of stalled free-trade deals, President Obama is battling fierce opposition from his own party and concerns over a rising trade deficit in a rush to meet his own self-imposed November deadline for finishing a major accord with South Korea .

"Mexico Adds Tariffs in Trucking Dispute," Wall Street Journal, August 17, 2010

Mexico plans to impose tariffs on an expanded array of American products, from pork to pistachios, escalating a trade dispute over a U.S. ban on Mexican truckers operating north of the border.

"South Korean Ambassador Touts Free Trade Pact," Peoria Journal Star, August 16, 2010

South Korea's ambassador to the United States said ratification of a free trade agreement between this country and his would benefit both countries, including an increase in U.S. jobs.

"Korea Ambassador Speaks in Peoria," Peoria Journal Star, August 16, 2010

Ambassador Han Duk-soo speaks about the benefits to both the United States and South Korea if the Korean Free Trade Agreement is passed to area business leaders during a "Growing Jobs Across America: Opportunities in Illinois" event at the Hotel Pere Marquette Monday.

"CAT Talks Benefits of US-Korean FTA," News 25 Now (Peoria, IL), August 16, 2010

Caterpillar is one of many American companies lobbying the Obama Administration to make a Free Trade Agreement with South Korea a higher priority.

"U.S. Seeks Boost in Asia Presence," Wall Street Journal, August 15, 2010

The U.S. is seeking to strengthen its presence in Asia in an effort to boost U.S. exports and provide a counterbalance to China's increasing dominance in the region.

"U.S. Seeking Engagement in Asia — As Part of its Engagement in the Asia-Pacific Region, the U.S. Is Negotiating New Trade Agreements and Seeking Closer Ties with Existing Trading Partners," Voice of America (Washington), August 12, 2010

One of the Obama Administration's chief stated goals is greater engagement in the Asia-Pacific region. "In every regard -- geopolitically, militarily, diplomatically, and economically -- Asia and the Pacific are indispensable to addressing the challenges and seizing the opportunities of the 21st century," said U.S.

"Obama Signs Tariffs Bill to Aid Manufacturers — Critics Demand Pressure for Free-Trade Accords as Deficit Expands," The Washington Times, August 11, 2010

President Obama on Wednesday signed a bill lowering tariffs on materials used by U.S. manufacturers and urged Congress to approve $5 billion in additional clean-energy tax credits, saying the moves will help the country meet his goal of doubling exports in the next five years.

"Grassley Calls for More Action on Trade," The Hill, August 11, 2010

Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), the ranking member on the Senate Finance Committee, on Wednesday urged Democratic leaders to capitalize on President Obama signing into law the U.S. Manufacturing Enhancement Act by advancing the three free trade agreements that have been sidelined since President George W. Bush was in office.

"Taking Initiative on Exports," Journal of Commerce, August 9, 2010

There is no shortage of ideas for meeting President Obama’s goal of doubling exports in five years and creating 2 million new jobs. What’s needed now are some hard data policymakers can use to get the country moving in the right direction, according to Frank Vargo, vice president for international economic affairs at the National Association of Manufacturers.

"FTA Talks Between Korea & U.S. To Cover Beef, Auto," Cattle Network, August 9, 2010

The Chosun llbo reports free trade agreement talk between U.S. and Korea will focus on the beef and auto trade. Adding clauses will most likely not be discussed.

"Resistance to Spending Crimps Administration Options," Wall Street Journal, August 7, 2010

The administration is now looking for ways to boost private-sector growth that don't involve spending money, such as expanding export opportunities for U.S. companies. President Barack Obama has been pushing for passage of a South Korea free-trade agreement, promising labor unions that it will enforce a range of worker protections in order to win their support.

"USTR Ambassador Ron Kirk Visits Blueberry Farm in Maine," Office of the US Trade Representative, August 5, 2010

Ambassador Kirk spoke on the benefits of the U.S. - Korea trade agreement, which will phase out the 45 percent tariff on blueberries over ten years. Trade agreements are one of the tools USTR is using to dissolve trade barriers around the world and pave the way for American farmers, manufacturers, small business owners and workers to export their products.

"Obama Says He Will Continue to Support Pro-Union Legislation," Wall Street Journal, August 4, 2010

President Barack Obama, speaking to the labor organization AFL-CIO, said Wednesday he would continue to push for legislation that would make it easier for employees to unionize. Obama acknowledged, however, that it may be difficult to get certain proposals passed in Congress. Republicans, conservative Democrats and business groups oppose legislation that would make it easier for employees to form unions. Such legislation, called the Employee Free Choice Act, has strong support from the AFL-CIO.

"US Industry: Trade Deals Vital To Meet Obama's Export Goal," Wall Street Journal, August 4, 2010

U.S. trade and business groups are skeptical the U.S. can double exports without the Obama Administration signing a raft of new free trade agreements. Although the Obama Administration is pushing ahead with a South Korean FTA, officials say their strategy focuses less on bilateral deals and more on boosting exports through promotion and more rigorous enforcement of trade rules. Business and trade groups lauded the president's goal to double U.S. exports in the next five years.

"South Korea and China May Open Trade Talks," New York Times, August 4, 2010

South Korea’s ambassador to China said in an interview published Thursday that his nation was likely to open free trade talks with Beijing next year. The negotiations could be a first step toward a three-nation trade zone including Japan, which would rival the European Union and the North American Free Trade Agreement in size.

"Obama Visits Chicago Ford plant," The Detroit News, August 4, 2010

President Barack Obama, during a visit to Ford Motor Co.'s Chicago Assembly Plant today, plans to tout his administration's efforts to boost auto exports. Rounding out visits to all of Detroit's Big Three automakers, Obama will tour a factory where Ford will assemble its 2011 Explorer.

"Obama Courts Labor Support for Trade Deal," Wall Street Journal, August 4, 2010

The Obama administration is promising labor unions that it will enforce a range of worker protections in new trade pacts in an effort to win labor's support of a revised South Korea free-trade agreement.  President Barack Obama is aiming to present a new version of the trade agreement at the Group of 20 nations summit in Seoul in November and has made it a centerpiece of his efforts to boost U.S. exports and job growth. But he has run into resistance from labor and other groups that maintain that this and other free trade deals don't go far enough to protect workers' rights in partner countries or open markets abroad.

"Textile Manufacturers Support Export Initiative," Textile World, August 3, 2010

The National Council of Textile Organizations (NCTO) has told administration officials that its members "strongly support" President Barack Obama's National Export Initiative, but they say the U.S. government must act in four critical areas if there is to be any hope for achieving the goal of doubling exports over the next five years. 

"Rochester a Leader in Exports, But Growth Has Slowed," Democrat and Chronicle, July 28, 2010

In terms of growth, the Obama administration has announced a goal of doubling U.S. exports over five years and plans to move ahead on a much-delayed U.S.-Korea free trade agreement. Congressional Republicans, meanwhile, say the administration's foot-dragging on pending trade pacts with Korea, Colombia and Panama has slowed the economic recovery.

"U.S. - ROK Economic Cooperation," Voice of America, July 27, 2010

Over the last 60 years, the U.S. alliance with the Republic of Korea has continued to expand from its military roots, developing into one of the most vibrant and dynamic full-spectrum strategic alliances in modern history. Implementation of the Free Trade Agreement would underscore the enduring strength of this strategic partnership and form an additional pillar of what President Obama has called "the extraordinary friendship and alliance between our two countries."

"Doubling Exports in Five Years: How We Do It," National Association of Manufacturers, July 26, 2010

Doubling exports in five years is an ambitious but achievable goal if major changes are enacted. The NAM, the CSI and the AFBF believe the following recommendations are essential to achieving this goal:
• Enact pending trade agreements with Colombia, Panama and South Korea.  
• Pursue new trade agreements.  
• Reduce non-tariff barriers.  
• Improve competitiveness with investments in infrastructure and trade facilitation initiatives.   
• Pursue a Doha Round agreement that expands world trade.  
• Improve export promotion efforts and financing policies.

"Ambassador Kirk Helps Ford Unveil New Explorer Model to Export Worldwide," Office of the US Trade Representative, July 26, 2010

"Increased exports due to the Korea deal alone may support as many as 70,000 additional jobs nationwide. That is why last month President Obama launched an initiative to complete the U.S.-Korea Trade Agreement."

"Hoosier Represents Soybean Farmers in Recent Trade Talks," Hoosier Ag Today, July 25, 2010

“The free trade agreement with South Korea would provide landmark opportunities for U.S. soy, meat, and poultry exports,” said ASA President Rob Joslin, a soybean producer from Sidney, Ohio. “The agreement is very positive because it will further open South Korea’s market to U.S. exports of soybeans and soy products.”

"Korea - More US beef may be imported," Meat Trade News Daily, July 24, 2010

Ambassador Han Duk-soo also said he was confident the two countries would resolve the troublesome issues by a November deadline set last month by U.S. President Barack Obama and South Korean President Lee Myung-bak. South Korea is prepared to plunge headlong into the talks with the United States to come up with "creative and mutually acceptable solutions," Han said.

"We Are Working To Boost U.S. Exports," Wall Street Journal, July 24, 2010

That is neither fair nor accurate. What Sen. Johanns dismisses as "dither[ing]" on free-trade deals, is in fact Ambassador Ron Kirk's commitment to negotiating tough bargains, ensuring that when America gives other countries the privilege of free and fair access to our market, U.S. businesses will get the same treatment in theirs. President Obama just asked Congress to ratify the pending Korean free trade agreement this year, and he is also committed to seeing the Colombian FTA ratified.

"Joint Statement of ROK-U.S. Foreign and Defense Ministers' Meeting on the Occasion of the 60th Anniversary of the Outbreak of the Korean War," U.S. Department of State, July 21, 2010

Building on the June 2009 Joint Vision, the Ministers reaffirmed their commitment to broaden and deepen the scope of Alliance cooperation. They shared the view that growing political, economic, social, scientific, technological, and cultural bilateral cooperation will increase the mutual understanding and respect between our citizens on the basis of common values and trust. They also committed to work together more closely and comprehensively at the regional and global levels. Reaffirming the utmost importance of the KORUS FTA, they pledged to work towards ratification as discussed by the two Presidents in Toronto last month. They also pledged to work towards a new ROK-U.S. Agreement for Cooperation on Civil Uses of Atomic Energy in a mutually beneficial way in order to meet the challenges of climate change and energy security in the future.

"Press Availability with Secretary Gates, Korean Foreign Minister Yu, and Korean Defense Minister Kim," U.S. Department of State, July 21, 2010

"We also reaffirmed a central pillar of our relationship: our commitment to the KORUS Free Trade Agreement. This agreement will benefit the people of both our countries, boosting commerce, growing our economies, creating good-paying jobs. We are working to resolve the outstanding issues, including leveling the playing field for U.S. workers and producers in key sectors of autos and beef, and we expect intensive discussions in the months ahead. South Korea is already America's seventh largest trading partner, with two-way trade and goods alone reaching nearly $70 billion last year. And we believe this is only the beginning of our shared economic potential. As President Obama said at the G20 recently, we are committed to getting the free trade agreement passed."

"Key US Senators Seek Progress on S. Korea Trade Pact," AFP, July 20, 2010

A group of senior US senators offered President Barack Obama their "strong support" Tuesday as he forges ahead with a free trade deal with South Korea opposed by some of his Democratic allies. "We write to applaud your call for a prompt resolution of outstanding issues to the US-Korea Free Trade Agreement (KORUS FTA) this year and to reiterate our strong support for such action," the lawmakers wrote in a letter to Obama. The group included Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman John Kerry, Senate Agriculture Committee Blanche Lincoln, and Senate Appropriations Committee Chairman Daniel Inouye -- all Democrats.

"Commerce Secretary Gary Locke Meets With Korea's Minister of Knowledge Economy Kyunghwan Choi," U.S. Department of Commerce, July 20, 2010

In their meeting, Locke and Choi confirmed the importance of further strengthening the U.S.-Korea commercial relationship and continuing to deepen cooperation on trade and investment issues. Both expressed support for removing barriers to trade, including finding a way forward on the U.S.-Korea Free Trade Agreement (KORUS FTA). They agreed that the KORUS FTA has the potential to provide significant benefits to manufacturers, service providers, farmers, ranchers and workers in both the United States and Korea. “Finishing up the agreement is a top priority for both President Obama and President Lee,” Locke said. “The U.S.-Korea Free Trade Agreement holds tremendous potential to create and support jobs in the United States.”

"South Korea Free-Trade Deal Pushed," Charlotte Observer, July 17, 2010

U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk visited North Carolina this week to talk to business owners about the benefits of a free-trade agreement with South Korea. "There's no question that a more robust expansion of exports in North Carolina would help not only North Carolina but North Carolina's economic recovery," he said in a conference call Friday that included the Observer. Until now, President Barack Obama has been wary of the agreement because of an imbalance between the U.S. auto industry and South Korean automakers, among other things. N.C. business owners expressed support for the agreement, but also urged greater measures to protect their intellectual property, U.S. Trade Representative officials said.

"Union Leader Says He is Open to New Korea Trade Deal," Wall Street Journal, July 16, 2010

AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka said he would support an altered version of the Bush administration's proposed free-trade agreement with South Korea, but only if the pact reduces nontariff barriers in Korea and protects workers' rights, among other considerations. "We don't oppose trade," he said in an interview. "We oppose the type of one-way trade we've had in the past." The existing proposed agreement was reached in 2007, but Congress hasn't approved it.

"'Stars are aligning' for trade accord, Caterpillar's Lane says," Chicago Daily Herald, July 16, 2010

The Obama administration is focusing more on trade than ever before, a sign that the World Trade Organization may be able to clinch a global commerce deal next year, said William Lane, an executive at Caterpillar Inc. Locally, Cat has operations in Montgomery. "For the last year and a half, the U.S. took a proverbial timeout on trade," Lane, Washington director for Peoria, Illinois-Based Caterpillar, told journalists in Geneva today. "That's clearly starting to change. The train is beginning to move and 2011 is clearly doable. The stars are aligning."

"U.S. Business Sees Doha Trade Deal Momentum in 2011," Reuters, July 16, 2010

Trade is moving back up the U.S. political agenda and there is scope to reach a deal next year in the long-running Doha round and other stalled trade negotiations, industry lobbyists said on Friday. But to get the backing of business, a Doha agreement must be more ambitious than what is currently on the table, said Christopher Wenk, senior director for international policy at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. "2011 is going to be a big year for trade in the U.S.," Wenk told reporters, saying the year would see action on free-trade deals between the United States and South Korea, Colombia and Panama, as well as a strong push on the Doha negotiations as part of President Barack Obama's exports initiative.

"Obama Attends Groundbreaking of LG-Affiliated Battery Factory," Yonhap News Agency, July 16, 2010

"The workers at this plant, already slated to produce batteries for the new Chevy Volt, learned the other day that they will also be supplying batteries for the new electric Ford Focus as soon as this operation gears up," Obama said, according to a transcript released by the White House. "That means that by 2012, the batteries will be manufactured in Holland, Michigan, instead of South Korea. So when you buy one of these vehicles, the battery could be stamped 'Made in America' -- just like the car." Since his 2008 campaign, Obama has repeatedly talked about the need to catch up with advanced lithium-ion battery technology in South Korea and Japan.

"Barack Obama Hails New Plants, Has Harsh Words for Foes," Detroit Free Press, July 16, 2010

President Barack Obama on Thursday praised construction of a new, $303-million automotive battery plant paid for in part with government money, as he chided political foes in Congress for trying to block his economic policies that he said are lifting the U.S. out of a deep recession. "This is a symbol where Michigan is going, it's a symbol of where Holland is going and where America's going," Obama told about 300 invited guests at a groundbreaking for a plant that has received a $151.4-million federal grant to cover half the cost of construction. The new Compact Power plant is expected to employ about 400 people when it opens in 2012 to make lithium-ion batteries for electric-powered cars, notably the Chevrolet Volt and Ford Focus. Compact Power, based in Troy, is a subsidiary of Korean-owned LG Chem.

"Envoys Make Case To Continue Work On Agreements," CongressDaily AM, July 15, 2010

South Korean and Colombian ambassadors expressed optimism on Wednesday that their countries' trade agreements with the United States were on a path toward approval in the near future. South Korean Ambassador Han Duk-soo said one of the most important remaining issues in negotiations of the agreement has been car imports. "[South Korea] would like to see more American cars," he said, adding that there are only 8,000 American cars in South Korea. President Obama said in June before the Group of 20 summit in Toronto that he wanted outstanding issues on the Korea deal taken care of by the November G-20 summit in Seoul. Obama would then have to transmit the treaty to Congress once it is approved.

"USA – A Lesson in Marketing Beef from Downunder," Meat Trade News Daily, July 15, 2010

NCBA continues to urge Congress to heed President Obama’s call to move forward on the Korea-U.S. Free Trade Agreement (KORUS FTA). If implemented, the KORUS FTA would reduce Korea’s current tariff from 40 percent to zero over fifteen years. With other countries like Australia moving forward on trade agreements with Korea, it’s more important than ever that Congress take immediate action. If Australia were to successfully ratify a similar bilateral trade agreement with Korea a year before we do, it would give the Australians a 2.67 percent tariff advantage over U.S. beef for the next 15 years.

"Union Leader Says He Is Open To New Korea Trade Deal," Wall Street Journal, July 15, 2010

AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka said he would support an altered version of the Bush administration's proposed free-trade agreement with South Korea, but only if the pact reduces nontariff barriers in Korea and protects workers' rights, among other considerations. "We don't oppose trade," he said in an interview. "We oppose the type of one-way trade we've had in the past." The existing proposed agreement was reached in 2007, but Congress hasn't approved it.

"South Korea Bulks Up on K Street as Obama Presses Trade Deal," The Hill, July 15, 2010

South Korea has bulked up its lobbying roster to help the White House convince Congress to take up a controversial trade agreement between the two countries. In the last six months alone, South Korea’s embassy has signed four different lobbying and public relations firms to advocate for the trade deal. South Korea’s spending spree has taken place as Colombia and Panama have slowed down their activity on K Street as their trade deals with the U.S. have stalled in the Congress.

"LG Chem Subsidiary Gets Eaton Battery Contract," Businessweek, July 15, 2010

Eaton Corp. has picked a subsidiary of Korean battery maker LG Chem to supply batteries for gas-electric hybrid power systems that will go into commercial vehicles. The subsidiary, Compact Power Inc. of Troy, Mich., broke ground on Thursday for a battery factory in Holland, Mich., near Grand Rapids. President Barack Obama attended the ceremony.

"Business Dials Up Trade Efforts," The Hill, July 14, 2010

Free trade advocates are ramping up efforts to win support for deals negotiated by the George W. Bush administration that have been stalled for years. The Emergency Committee for American Trade (ECAT) will hold a press conference on the Senate steps Wednesday to release a letter from ECAT Chairman Harold McGraw III urging the approval of free trade agreements with South Korea, Colombia and Panama. Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) and Reps. Adam Smith (D-Wash.) and Dave Reichert (R-Wash.) are scheduled to attend, along with Ambassador Han Duk-soo of South Korea and Ambassador Carolina Blanco of Colombia. The letter is in response to President Obama’s announcement last month at the G-20 summit in Toronto that he would push for congressional approval of the United States-Korea Free Trade Agreement (FTA). 

"Group Hoping To Seize On Momentum For Korea Deal," CongressDaily AM, July 14, 2010

A coalition of Fortune 500 companies is sending a letter to President Obama today applauding him for seeking congressional approval of the South Korea free trade agreement this year. The group, the Emergency Committee for American Trade, says in the letter that approval of the FTA will "help maintain and grow jobs and investments here at home." Obama announced at the June Group of 20 summit in Toronto that he would seek approval after November's midterm election and at that month's G-20 summit in Seoul, South Korea. The letter, signed by ECAT Chairman and McGraw-Hill CEO Harold McGraw and the heads of companies such as Wal-Mart, Coca-Cola, General Electric and Microsoft and obtained byCongressDaily, applauds Obama for his stated goal of doubling exports in five years, but says free trade agreements are needed to meet that goal.

"U.S. Business Groups Air Policy Concerns," Wall Street Journal, July 14, 2010

Mr. Obama last month pledged to renew efforts to move a South Korea free trade agreement through Congress, and to work on treaties with Panama and Colombia. This week, administration officials said they've asked business leaders to submit specific regulations that inhibit economic growth, and are open to a broad regulatory review.

"President Names United’s Glenn Tilton to Export Council," Trading Markets.com, July 14, 2010

United Airlines committed its support to working with the White House and President Obama on doubling America's exports over the next five years in combination with the commitment to complete the Korea/U.S. free trade agreement. The Company noted Glenn Tilton, United's Chairman and CEO, was named Wednesday to the President's Export Council. "The U.S. aviation industry, specifically network carriers that fly internationally, will play a critical role in achieving the goal of doubling America's exports over the next five years and will continue to be an engine of economic growth enabling global trade and the movement of people and goods," Tilton said. 

"Congressman Talks International Trade During Area Stop," Sammamish Review (Sammamish, WA), July 14, 2010

Congressman Dave Reichert emphasized trade as a prescription to revive the stalled economy during a meeting with Issaquah business leaders late last week....Reichert offered support for a White House goal to double U.S. exports by 2015. “His mission, which I applaud, is to double exports in the next five years,” Reichert said. “I’m going to bring some ideas on how we might be able to do that. One of those would be: We need to pass trade agreements.” The congressman said a proposed free trade agreement between the United States and South Korea could help meet the goal. Though the Bush administration negotiated most of the pact, the proposal has been stalled since 2007. Reichert launched a bipartisan group last month to speed up ratification.

"Ag Groups: Korea Action Good, But Colombia Also Essential," USAgNet, July 14, 2010

More than 25 other agriculture organizations wrote members of Congress urging them to work with the Obama Administration to pass pending free trade agreements and stem the tide of lost U.S. market share around the world.  Three agreements, with Colombia, Panama and South Korea, have been pending for more than three years. During the recent G-20 Summit in Toronto, President Barack Obama announced his intention to set a November deadline for removing outstanding obstacles to the implementation of the U.S.-Korea free trade agreement, or FTA. The groups praised this move, noting that the Korean market is the fifth largest for U.S. agricultural exports, valued at $3.9 billion in 2009, and the pending FTA could expand those sales by almost half according to American Farm Bureau Federation analysis.

"Ballmer, Immelt Urge Obama to Move Quickly on Korea Trade Deal," Bloomberg Businessweek, July 14, 2010

Chief executive officers of Microsoft Corp., General Electric Co., Wal-Mart Stores Inc. and other large U.S. companies urged President Barack Obama to move quickly on his pledge to pass a free-trade agreement with South Korea. “Decisive and quick progress on the Korea agreement is especially vital given that the European Union and Korea have signed their own trade pact which, once implemented, will put U.S. companies and their workers at an even greater disadvantage,” the executives wrote in a letter to Obama today.

"Big Business to Congress: Approve Stalled Trade Deals," Roll Call, July 14, 2010

Ahead of President Barack Obama’s upcoming visit to South Korea, large corporations such as Caterpillar, Citibank, Coca-Cola and General Electric are intensifying their lobbying efforts for a free-trade agreement with the United States’ long-standing Asian ally. Along with the heads of other powerful American companies, executives from the four firms on Wednesday sent a letter to Obama, encouraging him to make good on a recent pledge to finalize a Korean trade deal by November, when he’ll travel for the next G-20 meeting.

"U.S. Cattlemen’s Association Heads to DC for Capitol Hill Fly-In," Cattle Network, July 14, 2010

U.S. Cattlemen's Association (USCA) members will be in Washington, DC the week of July 19th, for "The Heat is On" fly-in. An intense schedule of meetings with administration officials and congressional members has been planned for the participants. Ranchers from California, North Dakota, New Mexico, and Montana will convene on Capitol Hill to advance the interests of their industry and convey their support for both domestic and international issues that include: comprehensive estate tax reform, the Open EAJA Act of 2010, and the U.S.-Korea Free Trade Agreement.  The USCA delegation will discuss these proposed pieces of legislation.

"S. Korea Open to 'Creative' Fix for US Autos, Beef," Reuters, July 14, 2010

South Korea is ready to consider "creative" solutions to open its market to more U.S. beef and auto imports to help win U.S. approval of a bilateral free trade agreement, South Korea's ambassador to the United States said on Wednesday. Ambassador Han Duk-soo also said he was confident the two countries would resolve the troublesome issues by a November deadline set last month by U.S. President Barack Obama and South Korean President Lee Myung-bak. "Just rest assured we will finish in accordance with the timeline set by President Obama and President Lee," Han said at an event with members of Congress and industry officials to push for approval of the deal.

"Another Big Biz Letter to Obama Pushes for More Action on Trade Agreements," ABC News, July 14, 2010

And yet another letter comes to the White House from business leaders, This one, titled “Doubling U.S. Exports in the Next Five Years” is from the Emergency Committee for American Trade. Signatories include Harold McGraw III of The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc., Jim Owens of Caterpillar, Jeffrey Immelt of GE, Steve Ballmer of Microsoft, and execs from Coca-Cola, Wal-Mart, Texas Instruments, IBM, Intel, and Citibank. The letter pushes for quick action regarding the three trade agreements negotiated by President Bush: the Korean, Colombian and Panamanian free trade agreements, which many labor unions oppose. 

“United Airlines Applauds White House Initiative to Complete Korean-U.S. Free Trade Agreement,” United Airlines Press Release, July 13, 2010

United Airlines today applauded the White House initiative led by President Obama and announced at this weekend’s G20 Summit in Toronto, to complete a free trade agreement with Korea by November, significantly benefiting the U.S. economy and building on recent efforts to open travel from Korea to the United States. “The Korean-U.S. Free Trade agreement will significantly benefit the U.S. economy and create U.S. jobs, and we welcome this important initiative by the Obama Administration,” said Glenn Tilton, United Airlines chairman and CEO. “At United, we have long advocated governmental action to remove barriers to international trade, and along with our Star Alliance partners including Korea-based Asiana Airlines, we provide the connections that enable people, businesses and communities to participate in an increasingly global economy.”

“AMI Also Push for Congress to pass Korea, Colombia and Panama FTAs,” PigProgress.net (AMI Press Release), July 13, 2010

AMI is joining more than 40 agriculture associations in urging Congressional Leadership to act quickly on implementing the U.S.-Korea Free Trade Agreement (FTA). “Failure to implement the agreement would not only prevent us from taking advantage of this large and growing market, it would cede our market share to competitors that already have in place or are negotiating their own FTAs with Korea,” said organizations in a letter sent to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, House Republican Leader John Boehner, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell.

“Korea – FTA with USA,” Meat Trade News Daily, July 13, 2010

The Obama Administration’s recent announcement it intends to press forward on Congressional ratification of the pending U.S.-Korea Free-Trade Agreement (F.T.A.) is encouraging news for the U.S. Meat Export Federation (U.S.M.E.F.). Korean tariffs are currently 40% on U.S. beef and 25% on most U.S. pork products.The F.T.A. will phase out tariffs on U.S. beef over the course of 15 years, while tariffs would be eliminated on frozen and processed U.S. pork by 2014 and on chilled pork within 10 years. Ratifying the U.S.-Korea F.T.A. is especially urgent because foreign competitors are rapidly gaining an advantage in this key market, said Keith Miller, U.S.M.E.F. chairman-elect, a farmer-stockman from Great Bend, Kan. Korea recently completed its fifth round of F.T.A. negotiations with Australia, which is its largest foreign provider of beef. Chile, which already has an F.T.A. in place that has lowered the tariffs assessed by Korea, has captured 14% of Korea’s imported pork market and Chile’s pork exports to Korea have increased 22% compared to last year.

"Congressman talks international trade during area stop," Sammamish Review, July 13, 2010

President Obama appointed Reichert to the President’s Export Council in May. The group — lawmakers, federal department chiefs, and business and labor leaders — advises the president on trade issues.Reichert offered support for a White House goal to double U.S. exports by 2015.“His mission, which I applaud, is to double exports in the next five years,” Reichert said. “I’m going to bring some ideas on how we might be able to do that. One of those would be: We need to pass trade agreements.”

"Business Dials Up Trade Efforts," The Hill, July 13, 2010

Free trade advocates are ramping up efforts to win support for deals negotiated by the George W. Bush administration that have been stalled for years. The Emergency Committee for American Trade (ECAT) will hold a press conference on the Senate steps Wednesday to release a letter from ECAT Chairman Harold McGraw III urging the approval of free trade agreements with South Korea, Colombia and Panama. 

“Critical U.S. Wheat Market at Risk,” Western Farm Press (Statement from U.S. Wheat Associates), July 12, 2010

Recently, we have seen some positive steps on trade. President Obama has now pledged to send the Korea-U.S. FTA to Congress by the November G-20 meeting in Seoul. Last week, the House Agriculture Committee passed H.R. 4645, the Travel Restriction Reform and Export Enhancement Act. If signed into law, it would clarify how U.S. farmers and agricultural businesses conduct sales to Cuba and remove long-standing travel restrictions, which together have significantly constrained wheat growers' market share there.

"CEOs Questioning Obama Policies Put on Boards," Bloomberg, July 12, 2010

President Barack Obama is trying to embrace corporate executives, even while tension between the White House and business community rises, as he seeks to get companies to step up investment and spur the economy. For executives, joining White House panels offers an inside track to influence policy. Ford CEO and President Mulally backs the effort to forge a free-trade agreement with South Korea that Obama supports, although the executive is pressing to include provisions to help open the country’s market to automotive imports.

"Who Will Pay Nation’s Bills? Candidates Differ Sharply on Tax Rates and Soaring Deficits," Columbus Dispatch , July 11, 2010

These are just three of the deep divisions on fiscal issues that separate Portman and Fisher in their contest to replace Sen. George V. Voinovich, R-Ohio, who retires at the end of this year after two terms. By contrast, Portman has long contended that knocking down other countries' tariffs on U.S. goods can create jobs. He said he would support Obama's call to approve a free-trade pact with South Korea if it were properly enforced.

"Business Step Up Criticism of Obama’s Agenda," Reuters, July 11, 2010

Businesses last month welcomed Obama's promise at the Group of 20 summit in Toronto to complete a long-stalled free-trade agreement with South Korea <http://www.reuters.com/places/south-korea>. He also has pledged to reinvigorate the effort to ratify trade deals with Colombia and Panama.

"President Obama Trades Up — President Obama is Right to Revive Free-Trade," National Review, July 9, 2010

During his State of the Union address in January, President Obama made an improbable promise: The United States will double its exports by 2015. History overflows with failed five-year plans for the economy — and the president's habit of locating all performance metrics on the far side of November 6, 2012, is exasperating — but his new attention to trade is welcome, as is news that the administration will take up stalled trade pacts with Colombia, Panama, and South Korea, the better to facilitate those exports.

“Obama Promises Push on Trade Pacts,” New York Times, July 8, 2010

President Obama, who vowed in his State of the Union address to double American exports over the next five years, said on Wednesday that he would renew his efforts to renegotiate long-stalled free trade agreements with Panama and Colombia and persuade Congress to adopt them. The two trade pacts, and a third one with South Korea, were negotiated by the administration of former President George W. Bush , but all three have languished in Congress because of deep opposition from Democrats. Mr. Obama said in Toronto last month that he intended to make a new push for the South Korean agreement, and on Wednesday he pledged to press ahead with the two Latin American pacts as well.

"United Airlines supports free trade agreement with Korea," E-travel Blackboard, July 8, 2010

President Obama’s announcement at the G20 Summit to complete the Korea-United States Free Trade Agreement (KORUS FTA) by November was met with much praise by United Airlines. “At United, we have long advocated governmental action to remove barriers to international trade, and along with our Star Alliance partners including Korea-based Asiana Airlines, we provide the connections that enable people, businesses and communities to participate in an increasingly global economy,” said Glenn Tilton, United Airlines chairman and CEO.

"US Says No Deadline Yet for Panama, Colombia Deals," Reuters, July 7, 2010

Kirk explained that last month's meeting in Toronto was a good time for Obama to announce a deadline for the South Korea agreement because "you had the practical circumstance of the president being at the G-20 meeting with South Korean President Lee (Myung-bak) and his pending visit in November, his state visit as well as the G-20 visit."

"Obama says he’ll submit trade deals to Congress ‘as soon as possible,’" The Hill, July 7, 2010

President Barack Obama said Wednesday he would submit three controversial trade agreements to Congress “as soon as possible.” Obama laid out his intentions to finish work on trade deals with South Korea, Panama and Colombia as part of a broader initiative to promote U.S. exports abroad.

"China-New Zealand Announce Plans To Move forward On New Beef Trade Deal," Cattle Network, July 7, 2010

NCBA continues to urge Congress to heed President Obama’s call to move forward on the Korea-U.S. Free Trade Agreement (KORUS FTA). If implemented, the KORUS FTA would reduce Korea’s current tariff from 40 percent to zero over fifteen years. With other countries like Australia moving forward on trade agreements with Korea, it’s more important than ever that Congress take immediate action. If Australia were to successfully ratify a similar bilateral trade agreement with Korea a year before we do, it would give the Australians a 2.67 percent tariff advantage over U.S. beef for the next 15 years.

Where Is Obama’s Trade Policy? Huffington Post, July 7, 2010

The New York Times yesterday published an editorial titled "Waiting for a Trade Policy," which noted that presidential backing for a single bilateral trade agreement does not a policy make: "South Korea is an important ally in a dangerous neighborhood, and the White House should push hard to get this deal finished and through the Senate. It should push just as hard for ratification of pending agreements with Colombia and Peru. But it can't stop there. It must also push for more open global trade bound by multilateral rules and obligations."

"U.S. on Track to Double Exports in Five Years, Locke Says," Bloomberg Businessweek, July 6, 2010

The top U.S. trade officials said the country is on track to meet President Barack Obama’s goal of doubling exports in five years, led by a 19 percent increase in agricultural exports in this year’s first quarter. Obama made the pledge in his State of the Union address. He also promised to expand trade with Colombia, Panama and South Korea. The White House is seeking to highlight progress on exports this week ahead of the president’s trip to an electric vehicle plant in Kansas City, Missouri, and remarks on the economy in Las Vegas later this week.

"5 Ways Congress can Bolster Growth," New York Times, July 6, 2010

For the sake of argument, let’s say that the Senate refuses to take the most obvious steps to help the economy. These steps — like preventing layoffs of teachers, police officers and other government workers — are especially important now that the recovery has lost some steam. But we’re going to imagine a world in which the Senate is incapable of distinguishing between the long-run budget deficit (a big problem) and the near-term deficit (quite manageable, according to financial markets). So even modest, short-term spending bills can’t pass.

"Canada-Colombia FTA Puts Critical U.S. Wheat Market at Risk," Truth About Trade and Technology, July 6, 2010

“Recently, we have seen some positive steps on trade. President Obama has now pledged to send the Korea-U.S. FTA to Congress by the November G-20 meeting in Seoul... Today, 126 trade agreements are being negotiated that exclude the United States, yet each involves current U.S. trading partners.. We urge the Administration and Congress to resolve any remaining issues with our Colombia and Panama FTAs and move the agreements forward to approval as soon as possible.”

"South Korea Looks for FTAs In Central America," Tax-News, July 6, 2010

South Korea’s President, Lee Myung-bak, has held recent meetings with the leaders of Panama and the other countries in the Central American Integration System (SICA), Colombia and Mexico, and has attempted, with each, to progress discussions on bilateral free trade agreements (FTAs).

"How Obama Lost His Asian Friends," NewsWeek, July 6, 2010

Obama tried to deliver some concrete results as well to demonstrate his focus on Asia. After a year of suggesting the administration might just scuttle the U.S.–South Korea free-trade deal signed during the Bush administration, in late June Obama announced that the White House would push for its ratification, which would create the most important American trade deal since the North American Free Trade Agreement was passed early in the Clinton administration. Obama also set a specific timetable, calling for the Korea deal to be completed by November.

“Analysis: On Korea Trade Deal, Obama needs GOP Aid,” Associated Press, July 3, 2010

President Barack Obama wants Congress to approve a free trade deal with South Korea. Members of his own party have shown little enthusiasm for the accord in an election year. So he's going to need Republican support, something in short supply during his term...Republicans traditionally favor foreign trade deals more than Democrats do, and they are lining up behind Obama's push to settle a pact that the White House says could boost exports of American products by $10 billion a year. It would be the largest U.S. trade deal since a 1994 agreement with Canada and Mexico. Rep. Dave Reichert, R-Wash., says the Korean deal “has the potential to create thousands of American jobs and continue a partnership with a democratic ally.”

“Potomac Watch: The Obama Trade Games," Wall Street Journal, July 2, 2010

More than three years after Democrats took the House, and more than 18 months after Barack Obama took the Oval Office, leaders of the majority party have rediscovered...free trade. Timing is of course everything, and the timing here bears analysis....Then came President Obama's surprise news at the G-20 that he's taking up the South Korea free trade agreement that has been moldering in Congress since 2007. He even laid out a timeline: He wants a revised agreement by November, so Congress can pass it a "few months" after that...He's going to need Democratic votes, and they will only come if he makes the free trade case to his own party. And sounds as if he means it.

“The $68 Billion U.S.-South Korea Trade Question,” Bloomberg Businessweek, July 1, 2010

When heads of state gather for fancy dinners and friendly chatter, leaders sometime cut through their own ponderous bureaucracies and actually get something done. President Barack Obama and South Korean President Lee Myung Bak did just that on June 26 when they announced at the Group of 20 summit in Toronto that they intended to revive a trade agreement inked back in 2007 but never approved by either country's legislature. Both sides aim to rework the deal by November, when the G-20 next meets in Seoul. With nearly $68 billion in two-way trade, it would be the largest U.S. free-trade pact since Nafta in 1994 and could help Obama make good on a March pledge to double American exports in five years.

“Analysts: President's Pledge on US-South Korea Trade Agreement Is Significant,” Voice of America, July 1, 2010

At the recently concluded G-20 summit, President Barack Obama pledged to resolve remaining issues in a U.S.-South Korea Free Trade Agreement and send it on to Congress for approval. Analysts say that after being stalled for three years, the pledge is a significant step forward that would boost U.S. trade ties with South Korea, as well as with the rest of Asia. Three years ago this week, the U.S.-South Korea Free Trade Agreement was signed by then-U.S. President George W. Bush and his South Korean counterpart, Roh Moo-hyun, in Seoul.

“Free-Trade Winds May Be Blowing Again,” Wall Street Journal, July 1, 2010

The longstanding U.S. campaign for ever-freer global trade was a casualty of job-destroying recessions and widespread American suspicion that free trade means making it easier for China to steal American prosperity. But we may—emphasize may—look back on the past few weeks as the moment when the trade tide turned. Consider three noteworthy developments... Two, Mr. Obama suddenly revived a U.S.-South Korea free-trade pact, aiming for a handshake deal when he visits Seoul in November while conveniently deferring any congressional vote until after this fall's U.S. elections.

"Aviation Sectors Applaud White House Initiative On Korean Trade Agreement," Aviation Online Magazine, July 1, 2010

The aviation community has applauded the White House initiative led by President Obama and announced at this weekend’s G20 Summit in Toronto, to complete a free trade agreement with Korea by November, significantly benefiting the U.S. economy and building on recent efforts to open travel from Korea to the United States.

"USMEF: Korea FTA has Never Been More Critical," Wisconsin Agconnection, July 1, 2010

The U.S. Meat Export Federation is encouraged by the Obama Administration's recent announcement of its intention to press forward on Congressional ratification of the pending U.S.-Korea Free Trade Agreement. Tariffs on U.S. beef and pork exports to Korea will be eliminated under the terms of the FTA. Currently, tariffs are 40 percent on U.S. beef and 25 percent on most U.S. pork products. The FTA will phase out tariffs on U.S. beef over the course of 15 years. Tariffs would be eliminated on frozen and processed U.S. pork by 2014 and on chilled pork within 10 years.

“US Congressmen to Launch KORUS FTA Working Group,” KBS World News KBS World News, June 30, 2010

A group of six U.S. congressmen will launch a South Korea-U.S. free trade agreement (FTA) working group on Wednesday. The group, including Republican Dave Reichert and Democrat Adam Smith, said they will seek the swift ratification of the trade deal and will promote the benefits of the trade pact. The congressmen said the South Korea-U.S. FTA is the most important trade deal the U.S. has negotiated with another country in the past 15 years.

“Reichert Launches Bipartisan Congressional U.S. – Korea FTA Working Group,” Representative Reichert Press Release, June 30, 2010

Congressman Dave Reichert today launched the bipartisan Congressional U.S. – South Korea Free Trade Agreement (KORUS FTA) Working Group to build further support for efforts to resolve outstanding issues and prepare the agreement for congressional consideration. The bipartisan group is composed of: U.S. Rep. Dave Reichert (WA-08), U.S. Rep. Bobby Bright (AL-02), U.S. Rep. Peter Roskam (IL-06), U.S. Rep. Diane Watson (CA-33), U.S. Rep. Erik Paulsen (MN-03), and U.S. Rep. Adam Smith (WA-09). At a press conference Reichert hosted today, members were joined by Han Duk-soo, the Republic of Korea’s Ambassador to the United States, and Selina Jackson, Vice President, International Public Affairs at UPS and a Corporate Co-Chair of the U.S.-Korea FTA Business Coalition.

“Rep. Bright to Launch Working Group for U.S./Korea Free Trade,” WSFA 12 News (Montgomery, AL), June 30, 2010

A bipartisan group Wednesday launched the Congressional U.S. – South Korea Free Trade Agreement (KORUS FTA) Working Group to build further support for efforts to resolve outstanding issues and prepare the agreement for congressional consideration. The bipartisan group is composed of: Congressman Bright, U.S. Rep. Dave Reichert (R-WA), U.S. Rep. Peter Roskam (R-IL), U.S. Rep. Diane Watson (D-CA), U.S. Rep. Erik Paulsen (R-MN), and U.S. Rep. Adam Smith (D-WA).

"Obama Sets Korean FTA Target Date," Tax-News.com, June 30, 2010

In remarks made after a bilateral meeting with South Korea’s President, Lee Myung-Bak, the United States President, Barack Obama, confirmed his intention to present the US-South Korean free trade agreement (KORUS FTA) to the US Congress. As there had already been a lengthy negotiation to arrive at the terms of the KORUS FTA, President Obama said that he had “indicated to President Lee that it is time that our United States Trade Representative work very closely with his counterpart from South Korea to make sure that we set a path, a road, so that I can present this FTA to Congress.”

“South Korea Trade Pact Back by Ford,” Detroit News, June 29, 2010

Ford Motor Co. on Monday praised the White House's decision to work toward improving U.S. automakers’ access to the South Korean market. “Ford Motor Co. looks forward to working with the administration and Congress on an agreement that provides meaningful market access for our manufacturers, that shows rapid growth of American-made automobiles sold in Korea, and that is enforceable,” Ford said in a statement.

“CEOs of Boeing, Xerox Pledge Support to Obama for Passage of Korea-US Free Trade Agreement,” Boeing and Xerox Press Release, June 29, 2010

Jim McNerney, chairman, president and CEO of Boeing and Ursula Burns, chairman and CEO of Xerox, issued the following statement regarding the Korea-U.S. Free Trade Agreement. President Obama recently named McNerney chairman, and Burns vice-chairman, of the President's Export Council. “We applaud President Obama’s decision to move the Korea-U.S. Free Trade Agreement closer to ratification. Implementing this agreement will provide a powerful boost to U.S. exports to one of the world's most dynamic economies, and it will drive job creation across many sectors of the U.S. economy. We offer our full support to the administration as it works with the U.S. Congress and Korean officials to address any outstanding issues and move this agreement forward for congressional approval at the earliest possible opportunity.”

“U.S.-Korea Business Council Supports Obama’s Timetable for Action on the Korea FTA,” U.S.-Korea Business Council Press Release, June 28, 2010

The U.S.-Korea Business Council welcomed President Obama’s commitment Saturday to “strengthen [U.S.-Korea] commercial ties, create enormous potential economic benefits, and create jobs here in the United States” by resolving pending issues in the U.S.-Korea FTA by November so that the administration can submit the agreement to Congress. “We applaud President Obama for setting forth a clear timeline for moving forward by addressing outstanding challenges on the U.S.-Korea FTA by the time of the G-20 summit in Seoul in November,” said William Rhodes, chairman of the U.S.-Korea Business Council and senior advisor to Citi.

“ECAT Applauds President’s Decision to Seek Congressional Approval of Korea-U.S. Trade Agreement,” Emergency Committee for American Trade Press Release, June 28, 2010

ECAT strongly applauds President Obama’s announcement that he will seek Congressional approval of the Korea-U.S. FTA within several months of the November G-20 summit. The Korea FTA represents a major growth opportunity for all major sectors of the U.S. economy and its approval and implementation will help jumpstart the U.S. economy and help sustain and generate American jobs.

“Cat Backs Korea Pledge,” Peoria Journal Star, June 28, 2010

Caterpillar Inc. supports the pledge by President Barack Obama to resume free-trade talks with South Korea, the company said Monday. Caterpillar Chairman Jim Owens, a longtime proponent of free trade, said an agreement with South Korea and other countries where they are pending would help not only Caterpillar, but the country by expanding its export markets. “I am very encouraged by the President's decision to push for the free-trade agreement with South Korea,” said Owens, who will retire as Caterpillar CEO on Thursday but remain as chairman of the board until November. “We have seen time after time that Caterpillar exports increase following the enactment of trade agreements with other countries, and I would expect the same thing to happen with South Korea.”

“UPS Applauds New Effort to Finalize Korea Trade Deal,” UPS Press Release, June 28, 2010

UPS today applauded the Obama administration for its move to re-engage with the government of South Korea to overcome remaining obstacles and finalize a bilateral free trade agreement. The administration announced over the weekend that it had made new progress on the free trade pact and that it had agreed with Seoul to finalize outstanding issues by November. The President is attempting to end a three-year impasse on a trade agreement reached with Korea in 2007 as another step in his initiative to double American exports over the next five years.

“NFTC Applauds President Obama’s Commitment to Move KORUS FTA Forward,” National Foreign Trade Council Press Release, June 28, 2010

The National Foreign Trade Council (NFTC) today applauded President Obama’s commitment to submit the U.S.-Korea Free Trade Agreement (KORUS FTA) to Congress for approval this year. The NFTC released the following statement. “We commend the president for stating his commitment to negotiating a way forward on issues that stand in the way of approval of the FTA, including the auto issue, and we applaud his plan to submit the agreement to Congress this year,” said NFTC President Bill Reinsch. “The KORUS FTA is the most commercially significant agreement in 16 years, and with the president’s goal of doubling exports and creating two million U.S. jobs in five years, ratification of the FTA is part of achieving that objective.”

“ACLI Statement On President Obama's Renewed Commitment To KORUS,” American Council of Life Insurers Press Release, June 28, 2010

Frank Keating, President and CEO of the American Council of Life Insurers (ACLI), issued the following statement on President Obama’s commitment to move forward with the Korea-U.S. Free Trade Agreement (KORUS): “At this weekend’s G20 meeting in Toronto, President Obama announced that progress has been made on KORUS, and vowed to complete the trade pact by November. ACLI welcomes the President’s decision and is fully supportive of quick passage and implementation of KORUS.”

“ASA Supports Administration's Commitment to Free Trade Agreement with South Korea,” American Soybean Association Press Release, June 28, 2010

The American Soybean Association (ASA) is welcoming the Obama Administration's commitment to remove remaining obstacles and secure Congressional approval of the United States-Korea Free Trade Agreement (KORUS FTA) that was signed on June 30, 2007. At the G-20 summit in Toronto this past weekend, President Barack Obama signaled his intention to set a deadline for removing outstanding obstacles to the implementation of the agreement and gain Congressional approval of the deal in 2011. U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk will be tasked with negotiating with his Korean counterpart to work out the details by the next G-20 meeting, which will be held in Seoul, South Korea, in November.

“ACE Comments on U.S.-Korea Free Trade Agreement,” ACE Limited Press Release, June 28, 2010

Evan G. Greenberg, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of ACE Limited, today provided the following statement regarding the Obama Administration’s commitment to advance the U.S.-Korea Free Trade Agreement. “I commend President Obama for announcing his commitment to ratify the U.S.-Korea Free Trade Agreement. This agreement will strengthen our commercial ties, create enormous potential economic benefits and create good-paying jobs here in the United States. It will also help solidify further our longstanding alliance with the people of South Korea and be a fitting tribute to our enduring friendship 60 years after the start of the Korean War.”

“Coalition Applauds Obama's Commitment to Move Forward on KORUS,” U.S.-Korea FTA Business Coalition, June 28, 2010

The U.S.-Korea FTA Business Coalition expressed strong support for President Obama's commitment to resolve all outstanding issues in the U.S.-Korea FTA by November, when the two heads of state will meet in Seoul, Korea for the G-20 Summit, so that the administration can submit the agreement to Congress. “The business community applauds the President's initiative to move forward on this landmark agreement and stands ready to support the administration to get this job-creating deal passed,” said Laura Lane, Managing Director and Head of International Government Affairs of Citigroup and a corporate co-chair of the U.S.-Korea FTA Business Coalition.

“AIA Supports Administration’s Efforts to Achieve KORUS Agreement,” American Insurance Association Press Release, June 28, 2010

The American Insurance Association (AIA) voiced its support of the administration’s intention to complete a Korea-United States (KORUS) Free Trade Agreement. The Obama administration has recently announced that it will attempt to resolve the remaining issues impeding this important trade agreement by the end of this year. “The KORUS agreement is particularly significant as it sets a new and higher standard for a market that is commercially and strategically very important,” said David Snyder, AIA vice president and associate general counsel. “Virtually every major procedural and substantive trade and regulatory issue is beneficially addressed in this agreement.”

“USCIB Applauds President’s Pledge to Move Forward on Korea Free Trade Agreement,” U.S. Council for International Business Press Release, June 28, 2010

The United States Council for International Business (USCIB), which represents America’s top global companies, released the following statement today: USCIB applauds the announcement by President Obama, at the G20 Summit in Canada, of the United States’ determination to move forward on the U.S.-Korea free trade agreement currently awaiting submission to Congress. Korea is already a key U.S. trading partner. Ratification of the Korea FTA would solidify market access in this important and growing market for U.S. companies, providing a boost to employment at home and to U.S. competitiveness overall.

“Obama To Push Deal To Finalize Korea Trade Pact,” National Pork Producers Council Press Release, June 28, 2010

President Obama has signaled his intention to set a deadline for removing outstanding obstacles to the implementation of the U.S.-Korea Free Trade Agreement (FTA) to gain congressional approval of the deal in 2011. The FTA would be one of the most lucrative ever for the U.S. pork industry, according to the National Pork Producers Council, which has championed the pact for three years now. At the G-20 summit in Toronto this past weekend, the president indicated he wants the deal done by the next G 20 meeting, which will be held in Seoul, South Korea, in November. U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk will be tasked with working with his Korean counterpart to bring about.

“President Names U.S.-Korea Trade Pact as Priority. Good!,” National Association of Manufacturers Shopfloor Blog Post, June 28, 2010

Great news! Korea is more than a $300 billion annual import market, and we are on the verge of being shut out as the European Union implements its trade agreement with Korea – so if the President sends the agreement up in early 2011, we will be able to avoid the export and job loss. The National Association of Manufacturers (NAM) has done its Congressional nose count, and the votes are there. All that is needed is for the President to say this agreement is in our interest and he wants it passed.

“Obama Seeks to Strengthen South Korea Ties,” Wall Street Journal, June 28, 2010

To help promote the free trade deal, White House officials this weekend cited South Korea's progress toward a similar deal with the European Union and said U.S. companies may lose market share in South Korea if that deal is ratified first. The U.S.-South Korea FTA is expected to boost the countries' roughly $75 billion annual trade relationship by 10% to 15% over five years, analysts say. It would narrow South Korea's trade surplus, which is already one of the smallest among major U.S. trade partners.

“US Pledges to Revise South Korea Free Trade Agreement,” Financial Times, June 28, 2010

The US said at the weekend it will seek to complete a long-stalled trade deal with South Korea, while the Group of Eight countries acknowledged deep troubles in global trade talks by shifting the focus to bilateral pacts. The White House said the revised pact would be agreed before the next G20 meeting, in South Korea in November, and submitted to Congress in the following months. The drive to revise and ratify the Korea "free trade agreement" has faced determined opposition in Seoul and within Barack Obama's Democratic party in Congress.

“NCBA Welcomes President Obama’s Call to Action on U.S.-Korea Trade”, Cattle Network, June 28, 2010

If implemented, the KORUS FTA would reduce Korea’s current tariff from 40 percent to zero over fifteen years. The U.S. beef industry would see $15 million in new tariff benefits in the first year alone, with about $325 million in tariff reductions annually once fully implemented. In 2003, U.S. beef producers sold $815 million in beef, beef variety meats and processed beef products to Korea. If KORUS enters into force, Korea could eventually be a one billion dollar market for U.S. beef producers.

“After Warm-up in Canada, S. Korea Moves to Center Stage of G-20,” Yonhap News Agency, June 28, 2010

This weekend's G-20 summit in Toronto, with a slew of thorny topics sidelined, was a warm-up event for South Korea's preparations to host the next session in November that may decide the fate of the new premier forum for international economic cooperation, officials and analysts said Sunday. The end of the two-day Toronto gathering means the start of Seoul's full-fledged preparations to greet the leaders of the world's powerhouses.

Obama Seeks to Strengthen South Korea Ties Wall Street Journal, June 28, 2010

At the summit of top economic powers in Canada, Mr. Obama stood with South Korean President Lee Myung-bak to announce that the U.S. would postpone a handover by the U.S. to South Korea of wartime control of South Korean forces to 2015 from 2012, something conservatives in South Korea had pushed for. Mr. Obama also said he would lobby the U.S. Congress to ratify a free trade agreement, a deal the two countries signed three years ago but that has languished in the U.S.

“Obama Aims to Tighten U.S.-Asian Ties,” Politico, June 27, 2010

Obama vowed to submit a new trade agreement to Congress after the next G20 in November if his administration and the South Korean government can resolve lingering differences over the next five months...Obama has pledged to reach a trade deal with South Korea before. “What’s different at this point,” Froman said, “is that he’s prepared to direct his teams – his trade representative and his counterpart – to sit down and to begin to discuss those issues with a timetable, to try to resolve those issues before this visit in November.”

“Obama Pledge Boosts KORUS FTA,” Korea Herald, June 27, 2010

The stalled Korea-U.S. Free Trade Agreement is again gaining momentum with U.S. President Barack Obama setting a November deadline for reworking the accord. Speaking after meeting with President Lee Myung-bak in Toronto on the sidelines of the G20 Summit, Obama said that the accord will be modified to meet the demands of lawmakers opposing the deal before the November G20 Summit in Seoul. The U.S. president also said that the modified accord will be submitted to the Congress within a few months of meetings held during the G20 summit in November. “It is the right thing to do for our country, it is the right thing to do for Korea. It will strengthen our commercial ties and it will create enormous economic benefits to create jobs in the U.S.,” Obama was quoted as saying by Bloomberg.

“Obama, Korea’s Lee Agree to Talks on Stalled Free Trade Deal,” Automated Trader, June 27, 2010

Once the issues are resolved President Obama will submit the accord, known in government as the KORUS FTA, to Congress for approval, Froman said, adding that completing the stalled trade agreement is part of the administration's export strategy to double exports in five years and increase employment. He said this trade agreement is expected to add another $10 billion to $11 billion a year in U.S. goods exports to Korea "and when services are added, substantially more than that." The U.S. currently exports $50 billion in goods and services to Korea.

“CSI Statement on President's Announcement to Move Forward with KORUS Agreement,” Coalition of Service Industries Press Release, June 27, 2010

The Coalition of Service Industries today welcomed the President’s decision to move forward with implementation of the Korea-United States Free Trade Agreement (KORUS). “The KORUS is one of the most significant bilateral trade agreements that has been negotiated. Korea is a very large and very dynamic economy. The agreement gives our services companies access to that market that they need to expand their sales there”, said Bob Vastine, President of the Coalition.
 

“ITI Statement on Obama Plan to Conclude U.S.-South Korea Trade Pact,” Information Technology Industry Council Press Release, June 26, 2010

The announcement this afternoon by President Obama is a welcome sign that the U.S. government is committed to creating jobs and driving economic growth by expanding our nation’s ability to sell into key markets across the globe, Dean Garfield, president and CEO of the Information Technology Industry Council (ITI) said following developments at the G-20 Summit in Toronto today. “Against a backdrop of 10 percent domestic unemployment and fresh signs that our nation is at risk of losing its competitive edge, it’s that clear we must embrace every opportunity to eliminate unnecessary barriers to fair and open trade. The U.S. free trade agreement with South Korea is by far the most commercially relevant among the pending agreements before Congress today. It complements the Trans-Pacific Partnership negotiation and is a win-win for both manufacturing and service-based industries.

“U.S. Chamber Offers Full Support for Administration's Commitment to Act on Korea FTA,” U.S. Chamber of Commerce Press Release, June 26, 2010

Following President Obama’s commitment at the G-20 Summit today to act on the pending Korea Free Trade Agreement (KORUS), the U.S. Chamber of Commerce offered its full support for White House’s efforts to expand trade for the sake of “creating jobs and keeping this economic recovery on track.” “Creating jobs is going to start with expanding trade,” said Tami Overby, the Chamber's vice president of Asia. “We stand ready to help the Administration in resolving the outstanding issues in this agreement. The top priority for our country should remain putting Americans back to work and this agreement is the linchpin to continuing our economic recovery.”

“Obama to Seek to Push Through South Korea Trade Deal,” Wall Street Journal, June 26, 2010

The U.S. International Trade Commission estimates the current agreement's reduction of Korean tariffs and tariff-rate quotas on goods would add $10 billion to $12 billion to annual U.S. Gross Domestic Product and around $10 billion to annual merchandise exports to Korea. In a statement, the White House warned about the prospect of the European Union and Canada finalizing agreements before the U.S. If that happens, "we stand to lose about $30 billion in exports. We must take the initiative to avoid putting U.S. jobs and growth at risk," the statement said.

“Business Roundtable Statement on South Korea FTA,” Business Roundtable Press Release, June 26, 2010

America’s leading CEOs praise President Obama’s decision to move forward with the pending free trade agreement (FTA) with South Korea, and are committed to working with him to secure its passage. The U.S.-Korea FTA provides a critical opportunity for American companies and workers to compete in one of the world’s most important markets. Conclusion of the agreement would also achieve two other very important purposes. First, it would help the United States increase its competitiveness in the increasingly important Asian market. Second, it will level the playing field for American companies and workers competing with those in Europe following the recent completion of an FTA between the European Union and Korea.

“Obama Will Resume Talks on South Korea Trade,” Associated Press, June 26, 2010

President Barack Obama said Saturday his administration will launch talks with South Korea aimed at resolving remaining issues blocking the completion of a South Korea free trade agreement. Obama said that his goal would be to clear up the remaining issues before he visits South Korea in November and to submit the agreement to Congress for approval within a "few months" after his visit.

“Obama Sets November Deadline for S. Korea Trade Deal,” Bloomberg Businessweek, June 26, 2010

President Barack Obama said he will revive stalled free-trade talks with South Korea, with the goal of finishing a deal during his November visit to Seoul and submitting a reworked accord to Congress in the following months. Work to modify the trade agreement to meet objections from some U.S. lawmakers will be done in a “methodical fashion” before the Seoul trip, Obama said after meeting with South Korean President Lee Myung Bak today in Toronto, where both leaders are attending a Group of 20 summit.

“U.S. Business Lobby Supports Obama’s Plans for KORUS FTA Ratification,” Yonhap News Agency, June 26, 2010

"Following President Obama's commitment at the G-20 Summit today to act on the pending Korea Free Trade Agreement (KORUS FTA), the U.S. Chamber of Commerce offered its full support for the White House's efforts to expand trade for the sake of creating jobs and keeping this economic recovery on track," Tami Overby, the chamber's vice president for Asia, said in a statement. Obama said earlier that he wants U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk to resume talks with South Korean Trade Minister Kim Jong-hoon "to make sure that everything is lined up properly by the time that I visit Korea in November." Obama is due in Seoul in mid-November when South Korea hosts the next G-20 economic summit.

“White House to Push Free Trade Deal With South Korea,” New York Times, June 26, 2010

The Obama administration announced Saturday that it would ask Congress to ratify a long-stalled free-trade agreement with South Korea after the midterm elections in November. The decision, which risks angering labor unions and their Congressional supporters, was announced as the Group of 20 economies began a two-day summit meeting here, following a smaller meeting by the Group of 8 powers. After the meeting with the South Korean president, Lee Myung-bak, Mr. Obama’s aides said they would try to resolve lingering issues by the time of the next G-20 leaders’ talks, to be held in Seoul, South Korea, in November, and present the deal to Congress shortly after the November elections.

“U.S. Vows New Push in Korean Trade Pact,” Wall Street Journal, June 25, 2010

The Obama administration said it has made new progress on a free trade agreement with South Korea that could overcome resistance in Congress, and agreed with Seoul to complete the pact by November. The plan, a bid to jump-start a languishing trade agenda, was announced at the Group of 20 summit Saturday and is designed to end a three-year impasse on a preliminary Free Trade Agreement reached with Korea in 2007. Seoul hosts the next Group of 20 meeting in November, where a deal on the agreement would be unveiled.

"Korean Ambassador Says Pact will Boost Trade with San Antonio," San Antonio Business Journal, June 25, 2010

Texas — and San Antonio in particular — have much to gain from a free trade agreement between South Korea and the United States, says Korean Ambassador to the U.S., Han Duk-soo. The ambassador, who spoke to the Business Journal during a recent visit to San Antonio to meet with local government and city leaders, says the agreement could boost the state’s trading position with the Republic of Korea. Korea is already Texas’ fifth largest trading partner, with some 40 Korean companies currently investing in the state.

“S. Korea Raises 2010 Growth Forecast to 5.8 pct,” Yonhap News Agency, June 24, 2010

South Korea's economy will grow 5.8 percent this year, the government predicted Thursday, sharply revising upward its earlier growth forecast to reflect the fast-rebounding latest economic indicators. The government also said that it will "normalize" stimulus introduced to survive the global downturn by closely watching inflation, employment and financial market conditions, a change from its previous stance that it will maintain economy-boosting measures "for the time being." "As the private sector, including consumption and corporate investment, keeps rebounding, we expect a continued economic recovery that is on a par with its potential growth level," the finance ministry said in its second-half economic management blueprint. "We forecast that growth will be higher than our initial projection of 5 percent, considering the strengthening recovery on robust domestic demand and exports fueled by a faster-than-expected global recovery," it noted.

"South Korea Ambassador Han Duk-soo Wants U.S. to Ratify Trade Agreement with His Country," Cleveland Plain Dealer, June 23, 2010

South Korea's ambassador to the United States said it is in America's best interest to ratify the Korea-U.S. Free Trade Agreement. A big reason: Almost 350,000 American jobs are on the line. If the United States passes on the agreement, it could lose billions of dollars in exports along with 345,017 jobs, Ambassador Han Duk-soo told a City Club audience in Cleveland on Tuesday. But if the pact is approved, the United States could enjoy a dramatic increase in its gross domestic product -- the total value of production and services -- and a big rise in exports.

"South Korean Ambassador Pushes for Free Trade Agreement," Business Courier of Cincinnati, June 22, 2010

South Korean Ambassador Han Duk-soo urged support for the proposed U.S.-Korea Free Trade Agreement during a visit to the region Monday, saying ratification could increase U.S. exports to South Korea by as much as $12 billion. And each $1 billion net export increase would lead to the creation of 6,000 new jobs, he said during an interview before speaking to a Northern Kentucky International Trade Association luncheon at the Metropolitan Club in Covington. “This agreement is good for increasing exports from the U.S. and increasing new jobs in the U.S.,” he said.

"S. Korean Envoy Touts Free Trade Deal,” Cincinnati Enquirer, June 21, 2010

South Korean Ambassador Han Duk-soo brought the case for ratification of the U.S.-Korea Free Trade Agreement to Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky Monday. “There are many good provisions in the agreement,” he said before speaking a Northern Kentucky Chamber of Commerce luncheon at the Metropolitan Club. Besides cementing strategic and cultural ties, Han said the trade agreement would “improve the welfare of the Korean people by giving them more access to cheaper U.S. goods and help modernize our economic institutions.”

“DHL Welcomes Korean Ambassador to its Cincinnati Hub,” DHL Press Release, June 21, 2010

DHL, the world’s leading express and logistics company, welcomed Korean Ambassador Han Duk-Soo to its U.S. Express hub at the Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky Airport on Monday, June 21. The meeting for the Ambassador and local business leaders, hosted at the DHL facility, focused on opportunities for local businesses with the Korean market, including the benefits that a U.S.-Korea Free Trade Agreement (FTA) could provide for the local and national economies. “DHL values the importance of the US-Korea economic relationship and the significance of the US-Korea Free Trade Agreement, which will create new access to U.S. goods and services in Korea, one of the world’s largest and most dynamic economies,” said James Min, Vice President of International Trade Affairs at DHL Express and a member of the Board of Advisors of the Northern Kentucky Chamber of Commerce and the Board of Directors of the Northern Kentucky International Trade Association.

“Ros-Lehtinen Statement on 60th Anniversary of Outbreak of Korean War,” Statement by Rep. Illeana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL), June 17, 2010

“The Korean-American community has greatly expanded over the past six decades while making immeasurable contributions to this nation’s economic and cultural life. Economic and trade ties have also boomed between our two countries, ties which could be greatly invigorated by prompt Congressional action on the proposed free trade agreement with South Korea.”

“Free Trade Agreements could Boost Meat and Poultry Industry - The Pulse-of Colorado Farm Bureau,” Colorado Farm Bureau Blog, June 16, 2010

Pending Free Trade Agreements with South Korea, Colombia and Panama represent immediate growth opportunities in both revenue and jobs for the meat and poultry sector. The third largest beef exporter in the world, the United States exports more than 897,000 metric tons valuing more than $3.1 billion in 2009. Pork and poultry exports are equally as competitive. Free Trade Agreements with South Korea, Colombia and Panama could create an additional $2.3 billion in exports and create nearly 30,000 new jobs. The jobs resulting from this growth, both in the commodity groups and downstream, would include an estimated 18,000 jobs in the beef industry, 10,300 jobs in the pork industry and 1,200 jobs in the poultry industry.

“Korean Ambassador in Town Next Week,” Cincinnati Business Courier, June 16, 2010

Local executives interested in doing business in South Korea won’t want to miss this opportunity. Han Duk-soo, Ambassador of the Republic of Korea, will be in town Monday to support the U.S.-South Korea Free Trade Agreement. Click here to learn more about that agreement from its supporters. The ambassador will be speaking at a luncheon hosted by the Northern Kentucky International Trade Association, known as NKITA, a program of the Northern Kentucky Chamber of Commerce.

“Free Trade Agreements Mean Jobs,” Pork Magazine, June 16, 2010

Passage and implementation of the three Free Trade Agreements currently pending approval in the U.S. Congress would represent an additional $2.3 billion in meat and poultry exports and the potential creation of 29,524 new jobs, according to a white paper released by the American Meat Institute. “It is clear that the road to both robust job and economic growth lies in expanding America’s export markets,” said J. Patrick Boyle, president and chief executive officer of AMI. Boyle noted that the trade expansion deals between the U.S. and South Korea, Panama and Colombia have been awaiting Congressional approval for years and the U.S. is losing market share as a result. “While the U.S. is waiting to enact these FTAs, our competitors are moving forward,” said Boyle.

“Study Finds Free Trade Agreements Would Add to Nebraska Jobs,” Aglines Blog, June 15, 2010

A new report from the American Meat Institute found that passage and implementation of the three Free Trade Agreements (FTAs) currently pending would represent an additional $2.3 billion in meat and poultry exports and the potential creation of 29,524 new jobs. Those result can be found in AMI’s white paper which was released June 15. “It is clear that the road to both robust job and economic growth lies in expanding America’s export markets,” said J. Patrick Boyle, president and CEO of the American Meat Institute (AMI). Boyle said that the trade expansion deals between the U.S. and South Korea, Panama and Colombia have been awaiting Congressional approval for years and the U.S. is losing market share as a result.

“US Meat Could Gain Billions From Languishing Trade Pacts–Study,” Dow Jones, June 15, 2010

U.S. beef, pork and poultry producers could begin selling a lot more product to South Korea, Colombia and Panama if the Obama administration and U.S. Congress sign off on three trade pacts. The three free trade agreements, or FTAs, were negotiated during the George W. Bush administration and would eventually foster an additional $2.3 billion worth of U.S. beef, pork and poultry exports per year by phasing out tariffs over several years, according to a new study produced by the American Meat Institute with the help of the U.S. Department of Agriculture and other U.S. meat industry groups. But the U.S. trade pacts remain idle while other countries benefit from their own pacts with South Korea, Colombia and Panama, undercutting U.S. exports, according to the report.

"Korea Fair Trade Commission Ranks Sixth among the World’s Major Competition Authorities," Global Competition Review, June 15, 2010

The Global Competition Review (GCR), the world’s leading antitrust and competition law journal and news service, announced on Thursday its annual ranking of 38 major competition authorities based on their performances in 2009. The Korea Fair Trade Commission was ranked sixth. Based on its assessment of each competition authority, GCR classified the 38 authorities into four groups: Elite, Very Good, Good, and Fair. KFTC is in the “Very Good” category, with the European Commission for Competition, UK Office of Fair Trading, Australian Competition and Consumer Commission, French Competition Authority, and German Federal Cartel Office. The UK Competition Commission, the US Justice Department's Antitrust Division, and US Federal Trade Commission are the only three agencies in the "Elite" group. A subscription is required to access the GCR report.

“South Korea, Colombia Start 3rd Round Of Free Trade Talk,” Bernama, June 14, 2010

South Korea and Colombia began Monday their third round of free trade negotiations in Seoul, Yonhap News Agency reported the trade ministry as saying. The two countries will discuss a range of issues such as services and investment until Friday, the ministry said. Both sides held the first round in Seoul in December. Their bilateral trade reached US$922 million in 2009, with South Korea's exports to the South American country reaching US$797 million, according to the ministry. South Korea's main export items include cars and electronic goods, and it imports coffee and resources, such as coal and nickel, from Colombia.

“Pork Producers, Choi: Korea Pork Trade Agreement Vital,” AgWired, June 14, 2010

A hot topic at this year’s World Pork Expo was the pending free trade agreements that are awaiting Congressional approval. Don Butler, immediate past president of the National Pork Producers cited the agreements between the U.S. and Colombia, Panama and South Korea could make a world of difference for the pork industry in this country. In fact, Butler says the agreement with Korea, if approved, could add at least $10 a head to hog prices (compared to about a dollar or so the Colombian and Panamanian agreements would add). Later, during a stop at the media room, I was able to sit down with Jong Hyun Choi, the Minister to the U.S. for Economic Affairs in the South Korean Embassy in Washington, D.C. and get his thoughts on the pending agreement. He pointed out that the agreement were signed three years ago, but Congress has not given final approval to implement the provisions. “It’s just about past time for the agreement to be ratified, approved by the U.S. Congress.”

“South Korea: We’ll Trade with Others if No U.S. Pact,” Des Moines Register, June 13, 2010

Trade with South Korea may be going elsewhere if the United States isn't ready to deal, the nation is telling pork producers. South Korea expects to complete a free-trade agreement with the European Union, the world's second-largest pork exporter, by January. Meanwhile, a U.S./South Korea free-trade agreement, pushed by Iowa and U.S. pork producers, has languished in Congress since the two governments completed negotiations in 2007. “The U.S. runs the risk of losing the Korean market within a decade if we can't get a free-trade agreement ratified,” said Jong-hyun Choi, minister for economic affairs for the South Korean embassy, who met with U.S. pork producers at the World Pork Expo in Des Moines last week.

“FTA Implementation Crucial to U.S. Pork Industry,” Pork Magazine, June 10, 2010

Currently, the United States is the largest supplier of pork to the South Korean market. However, tariffs placed on the U.S. product severely inhibit any growth in exports to the country. “We believe that implementation of the U.S. free-trade agreement with Korea (KORUS) is the single most important trade issue to the U.S. pork industry,” says Nick Giordano, vice president, international affairs for the National Pork Producers Council. “We need to get KORUS implemented as soon as possible.” Without implementation of KORUS, the U.S. pork industry could lose on two fronts. Growth of exports to this important market would be unlikely plus any future exports would be placed in jeopardy. “Implementing the KORUS free-trade agreement could strengthen the alliance between our countries,” said Jong Choi, Korean economic affairs minister, at a press briefing Thursday at World Pork Expo in Des Moines, Iowa. “Korea is the 15th largest economy in the world and we recently signed a free-trade agreement with Chile which has dramatically increased our pork imports from that country.”

“Bernanke Supports Early Ratification of Korea FTA,” Yonhap News Agency, June 10, 2010

Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke Wednesday supported early ratification of the free trade deals with South Korea, Panama and Colombia, pending for years. “I think we need to be part of the globalized economy,” Bernanke told the House Budget Committee. “I think trade is an important source of demand for our goods, and also a source of materials and imports as well. So I think that, generally speaking, we ought to push forward on the Doha Round and on the free-trade agreements that we're looking at.”

“Obama urged to bring Korea FTA to Congress before November for ratification,” Yonhap News Agency, June 8, 2010

A senior U.S. senator Tuesday called on the Obama administration to present the pending free trade deal with South Korea to Congress for approval before the mid-term elections in November. “I believe strongly that the United States, the Republic of Korea, and all of East Asia will benefit greatly from the implementation of the U.S.-Korea Free Trade Agreement (KORUS FTA),” Senator Jim Webb (D-Virginia) said in a letter to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, according to the senator's Web site. “I am also very concerned about the time delay in gaining congressional approval for this agreement.”

"Korean Ambassador Promotes Trade Agreement in Austin Visit," Austin American-Statesman, June 3, 2010

America's lethargic pace toward ratifying a free trade agreement with South Korea is costing this country tens of thousands of jobs and $10 billion to $11 billion in new exports. That is the argument of South Korean Ambassador Han Duk-soon and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, who together are trying to rally support for the trade accord that was signed by U.S. and Korean negotiators three years ago but has not been ratified by Congress. The ambassador spoke to a business audience in Austin on Thursday as part of a tour that he and the Chamber of Commerce are conducting to drum up support for the trade agreement.

"Korean Ambassador Talks Jobs in Austin," KXAN-TV (NBC – Austin, TX), June 3, 2010

Korean Ambassador to the United States Han Duk-soo is touring the country to urge the ratification of a free trade agreement between the two countries, but discussed expanding some companies which are currently in Austin. Duk-soo met with several city leaders including Mayor Lee Leffingwell at a luncheon event on Thursday and had conversations about job creation in Texas and more specifically Austin. “Texas is a trading state,” said Duk-soo. “Korea is the fifth largest recipient of Texas goods and services.”

"Korean Diplomats Lobby in Austin for KORUS FTA Ratification," News 8 Austin, June 3, 2010

South Korean Ambassador to the United States, Han Duk-soo, lunched with Austin city leaders Thursday. The Austin Chamber of Commerce hosted the Korean delegation, which was in town to lobby for ratification of the Korea-US Free Trade Agreement in the U.S. Congress. Congress passed the bill in 2007, but still hasn't ratified the agreement due to largely Democratic concerns that it would adversely affect auto and beef industries. Korea's consulate said ratification would be good for Texas, in particular. Government data shows that Korea is the fifth-largest recipient of Texas exports.

"Australia, South Korea Nearing FTA Conclusion," Tax-News.com, June 2, 2010

Korea and Australia are in the process of finalizing FTA negotiations. The nation already has free trade pacts with Chile, Singapore, India, the Association of South East Asian Nations (ASEAN), and the European Free Trade Association. In addition, Korea has a signed-but-not-yet-ratified agreement with the United States, and has initialed a similar agreement with the European Union.

"Republicans Urge Obama to Outline Plans for Trade Deals," Reuters, June 1, 2010

Republican senators urged President Barack Obama on Tuesday to lay out a "specific timeline" for winning approval of long-delayed free trade agreements with Colombia, Panama and South Korea. "The immediate consideration of these FTAs has never been so important," Senator Orrin Hatch and 15 of his colleagues said in a letter touting the "significantob gains that could come from the pacts. The deals have been on Obama's desk since he took office in January 2008 and he appears unlikely to send them to Congress before the November mid-term elections.

"S. Korea Becomes No.3 Export Market for U.S. Beef in Q1," Yonhap News Agency, May 27, 2010

South Korea became the third-largest market for American beef exporters in the first quarter, the U.S. Meat Export Federation (USMEF) said Thursday. According to data by the USMEF, U.S. beef shipments to the country reached 18,763 tons during the three month period, surpassing 18,487 tons sent to Japan, which had been the third-largest importer in terms of volume.

"OECD Raises Korea's Growth Forecast to 5.8%" The Chosun Ilbo, May 27, 2010

Despite the recent volatility seen in Seoul's financial markets, the OECD has raised Korea's growth forecast for this year, citing a surge in exports and business investments. In its latest economic outlook the OECD projects the Korean economy to expand 5.8 percent this year, up sharply from the 4.4-percent estimate given last November.

“U.S. Reaffirms Efforts to Push FTA with South Korea,” Xinhua News Agency, May 18, 2010

The United States reaffirmed on Tuesday that it is moving forward the free trade agreement (FTA) with South Korea, in an effort to achieve the goal of Obama administration's doubling export in five years. After meeting with South Korean Trade Minister Kim Jong-hoon, U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk said he will work together closely with his counterpart from South Korea on addressing the outstanding issues surrounding the U.S.-South Korea FTA.

“S. Korean Delegation to Visit U.S. to Urge FTA Approval,” Yonhap News Agency, May 18, 2010

A group of South Korean officials and business leaders will visit the U.S. this week to attend an annual meeting with their U.S. counterparts and urge Washington's early ratification of a bilateral free trade agreement (FTA), a local business body said Tuesday. The group of 26 officials and business representatives, including Trade Minister Kim Jong-hoon, will attend the 23rd Korea-U.S. Business Council to be held in Washington for two days from Wednesday (Washington time), the Federation of Korean Industries (FKI) said in a press release.

“US-S Korea trade deal a victim of US politics,” Associated Press, May 14, 2010

The ambitious deal to cut trade barriers was signed in 2007 but has since languished amid dissatisfaction over a yawning gap in auto trade between the countries. Still, advocates continue to push for the accord to be sent to Congress for a ratification vote, portraying it as potentially a huge export boon for both countries. Two senior senators, Democrat John Kerry of Massachusetts and Republican Richard Lugar of Indiana, urged President Barack Obama in a letter this month to press ahead with an accord they said would help the United States create jobs and strengthen the countries' alliance.

“Wine Market Makes Case for Free Trade,” Wall Street Journal, May 6, 2010

What better way to make a case for free trade than with wine? Or so goes the thinking in South Korea. Since Chile and South Korea signed a free-trade deal in 2003, Chile has beaten stiff competition from Europe and the U.S. to become the highest volume seller of wine to South Korea. The Korea-Chile free-trade agreement went into effect in 2004, a year in which the volume of Chilean wine imports to South Korea more than double, according to Euromonitor International. Before the free-trade agreement, Chilean wine accounted for 6% of South Korea’s wine imports, but by 2009 that figure rose to 24% as tariffs fell. It is a shift being used to persuade other countries to chase — or, in the case of the U.S., ratify — similar deals. Officials also are using it to illustrate how lucrative a trade deal can be for exporters jockeying for position in foreign markets.

“Ford Posts Record Monthly Sales in April,” The Korea Times, May 6, 2010

Ford Sales and Service Korea more than doubled its sales last month from a year ago thanks to the popularity of the 2010 version of its Taurus. The Seoul-based outfit said Thursday that it sold a total of 614 vehicles in April, up 151.6 percent from a year ago. In particular, it sold 456 Taurus to be one of the best-selling imported models here. During the first four months of this year, it sold 1,399 vehicles, up 87.5 percent from the corresponding period of 2009. All data is compiled by the Korea Automobile Importers and Distributors Association.

“Q1 Economic Growth Highest in 7 Years,” Korea.net, May 6, 2010

Korea’s economic growth in the first quarter stood at 7.8 percent, the highest in almost a decade, the government announced on Apr. 27. The national economic recovery seems to have gained more ground over the first three months, helped by balanced growth in public and private sectors, including exports and domestic consumption, said the Ministry of Strategy and Finance.

“U.S. Farmers Fear Australia May Gain Beef Trade Advantage with Korea,” Australian Broadcasting Corporation – Korea, May 5, 2010

America's National Cattlemen's Beef Association says if Australia ratifies a trade deal with South Korea one year before the US, Australian beef will have a tariff advantage over US beef for 15 years. National Cattlemen's president Steve Foglesong says failure of the US Congress and the Obama Administration to ratify a more than 2-year-old free trade agreement with South Korea now risks significant US losses to Australia on beef.

“Without FTAs U.S. Pork Producers Could Suffer,” Hoosier Ag Today, May 3, 2010

The failure of the United States to approve free trade agreements with Colombia, Panama and South Korea would result in the U.S. pork industry being out of those markets within 10 years at a cost to producers of more than $11.50 per pig and to the U.S. economy of thousands of jobs, according to analyses released Monday by the National Pork Producers Council. Conducted by Iowa State University economist Dermot Hayes, the analyses take into account the trade agreements the three countries have concluded with other nations. Colombia and Panama recently finalized FTAs with Canada, and South Korea is nearing completion on a deal with the European Union.

“Trade Deals Needed to Aid U.S. Exports, Farmers Say,” Bloomberg BusinessWeek, May 3, 2010

Congress should pass U.S. free-trade agreements with South Korea, Colombia and Panama to meet President Barack Obama’s goal of doubling exports in the next five years, a group of agricultural trade groups said. Legislation to pass the agreements, which would boost U.S. agricultural exports by $2.5 billion, has stalled in Congress, Bob Stallman, the president of the American Farm Bureau Association, said today on a conference call with reporters from Washington. Without the agreements, the U.S. may lose market share in those three countries to competing exporters including Canada and the European Union, Stallman said.

“President Lee Pushes for KORUS FTA, China Could Be Korea’s Next FTA Partner,” Korea Economic Institute, May 3, 2010

When President Lee Myung-bak came to Washington in April for the Nuclear Security Summit, he sat down with the Washington Post to discuss a range of issues, including the KORUS FTA. In his interview he said that the FTA is about more than an economic agreement. In his discussion with Fred Hiatt of the Washington Post, President Lee said that “The FTA will not only help to boost economic ties between Seoul and Washington, but is also strategically important for the U.S. in shaping its future policies regarding Asia.” In addition he cautioned that “The United States should always keep in mind China, which is growing fast, militarily and economically. The ratification of the KORUS FTA has a much more important meaning than simple economic cooperation between two allies.”

“International Trade Update Newsletter," U.S. Department of Commerce, International Trade Administration, May 1, 2010

As we celebrate World Trade Month, a new report from the Department of Commerce examines the relationship between exports and employment and shows the important role that exports play in supporting job creation and the overall health of the U.S. economy.

"Chevy Brand to Hit the Highway in South Korea," USA Today, April 29, 2010

General Motors announced Thursday that it plans to take its global Chevrolet brand to South Korea, considered to be one of the most closed markets in the world, starting with the well-known Chevy Camaro in 2011. “Chevrolet has enjoyed success in mature markets in North America and Europe, as well as in emerging markets in Asia-Pacific and Latin America,” says Tim Lee, president of GM international operations. “We are confident that it will drive us into a new era in Korea.”

"Feasibility of FTA Studied; Deal Involves Korea, China and Japan," JoongAng Daily, April 29, 2010

Korea will team up with China and Japan to conduct a working-level joint study on the feasibility of a free trade agreement among the three Northeast Asian countries, beginning next week, Seoul's trade ministry said yesterday. The three nations conducted a similar joint study on free trade from 2003 to 2009, led by civilian researchers. Last October, trade ministers from the three nations agreed to hold another working-level joint study on the agreement, with government and industry officials also participating.

"GM to bring Chevrolet brand to S. Korea," Yonhap News Agency, April 29, 2010

General Motors Co. will bring its Chevrolet brand to South Korea next year to help turn around its struggling local unit, GM Daewoo Auto & Technology Co., the unit's chief executive said Thursday.

"South Korea's Current-Account Surplus Surges," Wall Street Journal, April 28, 2010

South Korea's current-account surplus surged to a four-month high in March, after the balance swung into the black in February, due mainly to an improved trade balance as stronger demand overseas fueled growth in exports. The current-account surplus, the broadest measure of South Korea's trade with the rest of the world, totaled $1.69 billion in March, up from a revised $168 million in February, the Bank of Korea said Wednesday. That compared with a surplus of $6.64 billion a year earlier.

"KCS to Turn FTA Into Golden Business Opportunity," The Korea Times, April 27, 2010

South Korea should make the best use of free trade agreements (FTAs) with its trading partners to help local companies expand their presence overseas and attract foreign investment, transforming itself into a major worldwide business hub, the nation's top customs officer said Tuesday. In an interview with The Korea Times, Korea Customs Services (KCS) Commissioner Yoon Young-sun said he will make every effort to make customs clearance and other customs-related operations more business-friendly in a bid to help Korean firms more easily engage in international commerce in an increasingly globalized world.

"Herley Lancaster Receives a $7.5 million Contract from the Republic of Korea Navy," Herley Industries, Inc. Press Release, April 27, 2010

Herley Industries, Inc. announced today that the Republic of Korea ("ROK") Navy has awarded Herley Industries a follow-on contract valued at approximately $7.5 million for IFF (Identification Friend or Foe) shipboard Interrogators, transponders and ancillary equipment for installation on a series of patrol vessels. Herley's IFF system will interface with the ship's air search radar, surface search radar, and central fire control system, along with the ESM (Electronic Support Measure) equipment.

"First Round of Korea-Turkey FTA Kicks Off in Ankara," Arirang – Korea's Global TV, April 26, 2010

The first round of free trade negotiations between Korea and Turkey kicked off in Ankara on Monday where the two sides are expected to set the framework for their bilateral trade deal. The two countries plan to have talks on four sectors including goods, services, investment and regulations.

"More Cash Incentives Promised for Foreign Investors," The Korea Times, April 25, 2010

Foreigners who plan to invest in the country will get more cash support from the government starting next year. The Ministry of Knowledge Economy said Sunday that it is considering measures to increase incentives on inbound foreign investment. Currently, the country provides around 15 billion won cash support for foreign investment annually. It is considering expanding this support by two to three times.

"Boeing Chief Urges Quick U.S. Action on Trade Deals," Reuters, April 22, 2010

The United States risks losing significant export sales to the European Union, Canada and other countries unless it approves three long-delayed free trade agreements with South Korea, Panama and Colombia, Boeing (BA.N) Chief Executive James McNerney said on Thursday. "Action on these FTAs (free trade agreements), and some others coming down the line, is absolutely imperative in my view for our nation," said McNerney, who was recently picked by President Barack Obama to chair his Export Council.

"IMF Expects Korean GDP to Grow 4.5%," The Korea Times, April 21, 2010

The Korean economy is expected to grow by 4.5 percent this year, amid the backdrop of a "balanced and vigorous" recovery in Asia, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) said Wednesday. In its World Economic Outlook report for April, the IMF left its earlier projection for Korea's gross domestic product (GDP), made in January, untouched at 4.5 percent. For 2011, Korea's GDP is seen as growing at a slightly faster pace at 5 percent.

"Moody's Raises South Korea Rating," Wall Street Journal, April 14, 2010

Moody's Investors Service upgraded South Korea Wednesday, citing the country's "exceptional" rebound from the global downturn and the government's success in curbing its debt. The ratings firm raised its rating on government debt by a notch to A1, its fifth-highest rank. "The Korean economy is responding rapidly to the improving global economic environment, and the government has put in place supportive policy measures which should help sustain economic growth over time," Moody's said. 

"South Korea's Jobless Rate Drops by Most in 10 Years," Bloomberg, April 14, 2010

South Korea's unemployment rate declined in March by the most in more than 10 years as government programs to create public-sector jobs gathered pace. The jobless rate fell to 3.8 percent from 4.4 percent in February, after hitting a 10-year high of 4.8 percent in January, Statistics Korea said today in Gwacheon, citing seasonally adjusted figures.

"Biden Says U.S. Determined to Move Ahead on FTA with South Korea," Yonhap News Agency, April 12, 2010

U.S. Vice President Joe Biden affirmed Monday that his administration is determined to get a free trade agreement (FTA) with South Korea ratified by Congress at an early date, South Korean officials said after his meeting with President Lee Myung-bak here. In talks with Biden at the White House, Lee asked for the "leadership by President Barack Obama and the vice president to get the FTA passed by Congress, as the U.S. administration has removed a major domestic obstacle by concluding the health care reform bill, one of Lee's aides told reporters on customary condition of anonymity.

"Will the U.S. Commit to Free Trade with South Korea?," Washington Post, April 12, 2010

In a world of dangerously failed states and willful challengers to American leadership, South Korea is an astoundingly successful democracy that wants to be friends. But will America say yes? That seemed to be the question perplexing President Lee Myung-bak when I interviewed him here last Wednesday, though he described relations at the moment as excellent. (Excerpts from our conversation are available here.) The two nations have signed a free-trade agreement that Lee believes would -- in addition to bringing obvious economic benefit to both sides -- seal a crucial alliance and promote stability throughout Northeast Asia. But President Obama has yet to submit the agreement to Congress for ratification or say when he might do so.

"Fred Hiatt interviews South Korean President Lee Myung-bak," Washington Post, April 12, 2010

For us, the FTA is not just simply a trade agreement or an economic agreement. It really is much more than that. And I think the KORUS-FTA will also play a very important part of the Obama administration's new Asia policy as well. And I'm very certain that the U.S. administration fully realizes the importance and the significance of the KORUS-FTA. I hope that the U.S. administration and President Obama will continue to work closely with the U.S. Congress so that the KORUS FTA will be ratified as soon as possible.

“How Korea Fretted Its Way to Success,” Bloomberg BusinessWeek, April 8, 2010

The Korean business community thrives on worry. And for most of the past decade its main fear has been what could be called the Big Squeeze Theory. With higher labor and production costs than most Chinese exporters, the theory went, Korea's major conglomerates, or chaebol, would start losing market share to Chinese champions such as Huawei, BYD, or Baosteel. At the same time, Hyundai Motor, LG Electronics, and Samsung would, after a decade of dazzling success, finally be out-innovated by their archrivals in Japan.

"Amb. Han: KORUS FTA Will Help Create Jobs in U.S.," KBS World News, April 7, 2010

The nation's ambassador to the United States is urging for a swift ratification of the South Korea-U.S. free trade agreement. Ambassador Han Duck-soo made the call on Wednesday during a breakfast forum organized by top business leaders in New York. Han said that once the trade pact is ratified, the U.S. would enjoy eleven billion dollars in economic benefits and would see some 75-thousand jobs created.

"S.Korea Envoy Says Trade Deal Would Boost US Jobs," Reuters, April 6, 2010

U.S. approval of a long-delayed trade deal with South Korea would help President Barack Obama meet his goal of doubling exports over the next five years and create as many as 72,000 American jobs, South Korea's ambassador to the United States said on Tuesday. "I hope you all will join me in letting President Obama, Commerce Secretary (Gary) Locke and U.S. Trade Representative (Ron) Kirk know of your fervent desire to see this agreement submitted to Congress, approved and put into force," Ambassador Han Duk-soo said in the prepared text of remarks to a business group in New York.

"US Trade Rep: Obama Committed To Completing Free-Trade Pacts," Dow Jones, April 5, 2010

President Barack Obama is committed to completing the free-trade agreements started by the Bush administration, U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk said Monday.… Kirk said free-trade agreements expand markets for U.S.-made goods by eliminating tariffs that make U.S. exports more expensive. That, in turn, supports additional employment in the U.S. "For us, every one of them represents new market access and a chance to help save jobs here," said Kirk, a former mayor of Dallas.

"Kirk: FTA Ratification Growing Nearer," KBS World News, April 4, 2010

U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk says the ratification of a free trade agreement between South Korea and the U.S. is nearer than it was when the Obama administration launched 14 months ago. Kirk told an interview with Bloomberg Television Saturday that the prolonged delay in the ratification would hurt the interests of the U.S. The U.S. official also agreed that Washington could be isolated from the world's fastest growing economic bloc if it fails to make progress in its FTA with South Korea.

"Korean Ambassador Touts Free Trade Agreement at Chamber Breakfast," Montgomery Advertiser, April 2, 2010

Han Duk-soo, ambassador to the United States from the Republic of Korea, launched a 10-city tour to promote passage of the U.S.-Korea Free Trade Agreement in Montgomery on Thursday by pointing to Hyundai Motor Manufacturing Alabama as a example of the business relationship between the two countries. Duk-soo met with business and government leaders, spoke to about 300 members of the Montgomery Area Chamber of Commerce and toured the Hyundai plant during his stay in Montgomery.

"S. Korean Trade Minister Urges Quick Ratification of KORUS FTA," Yonhap News Agency, April 2, 2010

South Korea's top trade official on Friday urged Washington to hasten steps toward ratifying a pending free trade accord signed with Seoul three years ago, saying the pact is mutually beneficial. The free trade pact between Korea and the United States was signed on April 2, 2007, but still awaits ratification in the legislatures of both countries. "I had expected the deal to be ratified within one year after it was signed," South Korean Trade Minister Kim Jong-hoon told Yonhap News Agency. "The delay in the ratification of the deal is very regrettable."

"Korean Ambassador in Montgomery Today," Montgomery Advertiser, April 1, 2010

Han Duk-soo, the ambassador to the United States from the Republic of Korea, will visit Montgomery today, where he will speak, along with Gov. Bob Riley, at a breakfast. The two will discuss a business partnership between the United States and South Korea and its potential for growing jobs in the state. Later, the ambassador will tour Hyundai Motor Manufacturing Alabama.

"South Korean Ambassador Promotes Free Trade in Mobile Visit," Mobile Register, April 1, 2010

A free-trade agreement between the U.S. and South Korea would increase Alabama exports and create jobs, the Korean ambassador to the U.S. told a group of Mobile officials during a tour of the state docks on Wednesday.  Han Duk-soo's visit to Mobile was the start of a two-day tour of Alabama, an effort to drum up support for the U.S.-Korea Free Trade Agreement. The agreement, signed in 2007, awaits Congressional approval. If passed, motor vehicles and agricultural products -- such as cabbage, cotton, and many dairy products -- will immediately be free of duties -- the taxes countries charge on imports as a way to protect their own industries.

"Chamber Kicks Off Multicity Push for Trade Agreement," Roll Call, April 1, 2010

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce is taking its free-trade agenda on the road this week, kicking off a multicity tour to rally support for a free-trade agreement between the United States and South Korea. That FTA remains stalled despite recent White House overtures. On Thursday, Korean Ambassador Han Duk-soo headlined an event in Alabama that drew more than 200 business leaders, according to chamber official Tami Overby.

"State Leaders, South Korean Ambassador Meet to Talk Free Trade," Alabama Public Radio, April 1, 2010

Today in Montgomery, the South Korean ambassador to the U-S, Governor Riley and economic and business leaders met to discuss a proposed free trade agreement, or FTA, between the United States and South Korea. On both sides of the Pacific, there is opposition to the plan, which South Korea's government wants to be approved by this summer.

 
"South Korean Envoy to Embark on US Tour to Promote Trade Deal," Yonhap News Agency, March 31, 2010

South Korean ambassador Han To'k-su [Han Duck-soo] will embark on a lengthy tour of US cities until November to promote congressional approval of the pending free trade deal with the United States, the South Korean embassy said Tuesday. The Obama administration has yet to set a timeline for the ratification of the KORUS Free Trade Agreement, signed in 2007, citing an imbalance in auto trade and restricted shipments of US beef.

"U.S. Chamber Kicks Off Effort to Move Korea FTA," The Hill, March 31, 2010

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce on Wednesday will kick off a multi-city tour to move the U.S.-South Korea free trade agreement closer to enforcement. The trade pact has been stalled since the two countries inked the deal in June of 2007. If approved, the U.S. International Trade Commission estimates the agreement would add $10 billion to $12 billion to the U.S. GDP and boost exports to Korea by $10 billion.

"S. Korean Envoy to Embark on Months-long Tour of U.S. Cities to Promote Korea FTA," Yonhap News Agency, March 30, 2010

South Korean ambassador Han Duck-soo will embark on a lengthy tour of U.S. cities until November to promote congressional approval of the pending free trade deal with the United States, the South Korean embassy said Tuesday. The Obama administration has yet to set a timeline for the ratification of the KORUS Free Trade Agreement, signed in 2007, citing an imbalance in auto trade and restricted shipments of U.S. beef.

"Ambassador Urges Swift Ratification of KORUS FTA," KBS World News, March 19, 2010

The nation's ambassador to the United States, Han Duck-soo, is calling for a swift ratification of the South Korea-U.S. free trade agreement, saying the trade pact will benefit both nations. Han said Friday that the agreement could greatly contribute to improving bilateral economic cooperation. The ambassador added that under the current circumstances, the pending free trade agreement between South Korea and the European Union is expected to see more progress than the one between Seoul and Washington.

"Korean, US Lawmakers to Form FTA Task Force," KBS World News, March 18, 2010

Efforts are under way to form a consultative body comprised of Korean and U.S. lawmakers to push for the ratification of their bilateral free trade agreement (FTA). Ruling Grand National Party lawmakers An Kyung-ryul and Chung Ok-nim, who are visiting the U.S. to attend a Korea-U.S. FTA support rally, say Republican Representative Pete Sessions made the proposal to them while in Washington.

"Korea Bolsters New Orleans Ties with New Honorary Consul," New Orleans City Business, March 16, 2010

The Republic of Korea has a new honorary consul-general in New Orleans. Attorney William Langenstein III was recently named to the post by Houston-region Consul General Yun-soo Cho, who was in the city Monday to make the appointment official…Louisiana ports shipped more than $1.4 billion in goods to South Korea last year, mostly agricultural products and chemicals. In January 2008, South Korean businesses made what was then the country's largest foreign investment ever when Korean National Oil Corp. established a joint venture with Samsung Corp. to acquire New Orleans-based Taylor Oil Co. in a deal valued at $1 billion.

"South Korean Industry Minister Wants Fast US Free Trade Ratification," Associated Press, March 16, 2010

South Korea's industry minister called on the United States to quickly ratify a bilateral free trade agreement that has languished in limbo for nearly three years after being signed. The two countries finished negotiations for the ambitious accord to cut tariffs and other barriers to commerce in April of 2007 and signed it three months later. There has been little progress since amid changes in government in both countries, the global financial crisis, declining trade and U.S. demands that South Korea address its wide surplus in auto trade.

"Salesman in Chief," Washington Post, March 14, 2010

President Obama wants to double U.S. exports between now and 2015, and it's a worthy goal. It won't be easy: Exports fell from $1.8 trillion in 2008 to $1.5 trillion in 2009, due to the global recession. But, as the president suggested in a speech Thursday, a big boost in sales of U.S. goods and services abroad would support 2 million American jobs. And some of his ideas could help that happen: an additional $2 billion in Export-Import Bank credit; streamlining the review process for sensitive technology exports; high-level support from the President's Export Council... On the first point, Mr. Obama has proposed a new Trans-Pacific Partnership with Asian economies but has unfortunately continued to send mixed signals on three already-negotiated free-trade agreements -- with South Korea, Colombia and Panama -- that could boost exports immediately.

“Obama's Ambitious Export Plan May Rekindle Free-trade Battle,” Washington Post, March 12, 2010

President Obama unveiled plans Thursday to double U.S. exports over the next five years in hopes of spurring job growth, an ambitious goal that may rekindle the battle over free-trade policy. The president acknowledged the formidable barriers to his goal: doubts in Congress over new free-trade agreements, misaligned currencies that make Chinese products cheaper on global markets, and continued weakness in global demand, all problems that could dwarf efforts to promote U.S. products and services abroad.

“Obama Outlines Drive to Raise U.S. Exports,” New York Times, March 11, 2010

President Obama on Thursday announced a broad effort to promote American goods overseas, hoping to bolster competitiveness abroad and create jobs in the United States. But trade specialists questioned whether the plan had the potential to double exports in five years and create two million jobs — the president’s goal — saying the major challenge would be to overcome stiff trade barriers and create new markets. Mr. Obama framed his plan as a means of jump-starting the sluggish economy. He called for increasing credit for small- and medium-sized businesses by $2 billion, easing restrictions on selling certain goods abroad, and the establishment of a cabinet-level panel on exports.

“Obama Details Effort to Double Exports Over Five Years,” Wall Street Journal, March 11, 2010

Looking to spur the economy and ease joblessness by doubling U.S. exports over the next five years, President Barack Obama is ordering federal agencies to zero in on export promotion, expanding trade-finance opportunities for small- and medium-sized businesses, and moving to overhaul an outdated export-control system. Mr. Obama sketched those and other trade moves—part of a broader effort the White House says will support two million new jobs—in a speech at the Export-Import Bank's annual conference.

"USTR Places Korea FTA's Ratification Among Priorities This Year: Kirk," Yonhap News Agency, March 3, 2010

Congressional approval of the pending free trade deals with South Korea, Panama and Colombia should be a priority for the Obama administration as it seeks to double U.S. exports within five years, the chief U.S. trade official said Wednesday. "As the president said last week, we are working to resolve the outstanding issues so that we can move forward on trade agreements with South Korea, Panama and Colombia," U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk told a Senate Finance Committee hearing. "Approval of these FTAs is a priority."

"KORUS FTA Beneficial to Both Economies: Top Diplomat," Yonhap News Agency, February 17, 2010

A top South Korean diplomat in Washington on Wednesday urged the ratification of a pending free trade deal between South Korea and the United States, saying it will serve as a good opportunity for both economies to grow further. "I don't agree that a free trade agreement will take jobs away and prove unpopular," South Korean Ambassador to the U.S. Han Duck-soo said at a luncheon meeting in Seoul, hosted by the American Chamber of Commerce in Korea.

“Obama’s Balancing Act on U.S. Trade Policies,” New York Times, February 7, 2010

Unless the South Korea, Panama and Colombia trade deals are implemented, “the president will have no hope at all of keeping his promise to create two million new jobs,” said Jim Bacchus, a trade lawyer, former Democratic congressman from Florida and onetime World Trade Organization. Chamber officials calculated that failure to implement those agreements would cost the economy 383,400 jobs. But they remained hopeful that, eventually, the White House would move forward rather than abandon them.

"Obama Champions Exports in Overture to Business," Reuters, January 27, 2010

President Barack Obama on Wednesday launched a drive to double U.S. exports over the next five years in a move that reaches out to business groups and Republicans who have criticized his inaction on trade….Obama said he also wanted closer trade ties with Panama, Colombia and South Korea. Those three countries have signed trade deals with the United States.

"Obama Pledges to Double US exports," Agence France Press, January 27, 2010

President Barack Obama pledged Wednesday to double US exports in five years and boost commerce with South Korea, Panama and Colombia, but stopped short of urging Congress to pass trade pacts. "Tonight, we set a new goal: We will double our exports over the next five years, an increase that will support two million jobs in America," Obama said in the annual State of the Union address to a joint session of Congress.

"U.S. to Work Closely with Korea on FTA Ratification: State Dept.," Yonhap News Agency, January 21, 2010

The Barack Obama administration will work closely with South Korea for congressional approval of a pending free trade deal that could help revive the U.S. economy, struggling through the worst recession in decades, a senior U.S. official said Thursday. "Continued integration of the economies of this region will create new business opportunities, benefiting workers, consumers, and businesses and creating jobs back here in the United States," Kurt Campbell, assistant secretary of state for East Asian and Pacific Affairs, told a hearing of the Senate foreign relations subcommittee.

"Obama Urged to Move for Ratification of Korea FTA," Yonhap News Agency, January 13, 2010

The biggest U.S. business lobby called on the Obama administration Tuesday to seek Congressional approval of pending free trade deals with South Korea, Colombia and Panama to help create jobs amid the worst recession in decades. "Washington is sitting on pending trade agreements with South Korea, Colombia, and Panama," Thomas Donohue, president of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, told a forum here. "If we fail to pass them, we will not only miss opportunities to create new jobs, but we will lose existing jobs."

"South Korea Urges US to Move Ahead on Free Trade Agreement to Boost Jobs," Associated Press, November 24, 2009

South Korea's trade chief urged Washington on Tuesday to implement a stalled free trade deal, warning the U.S. would suffer if Seoul's agreement with the European Union takes effect first. "I think the package overall is a very good deal for both of us," Trade Minister Kim Jong-hoon said of South Korea's free trade agreement with the United States. He cited a recent U.S. study suggesting the country could lose nearly 350,000 jobs if it does not ratify and implement the deal with South Korea while Europe and others do.

"Obama Urged to Expedite Korea FTA's Ratification or Lose Competitive Edge," Yonhap News Agency, November 24, 2009

The biggest lobbying group for U.S. businesses Monday called on the Barack Obama administration to press for early ratification of the pending free trade agreement with South Korea, noting that Korea is forging trade pacts with U.S. competitors. John Murphy, vice president of U.S. Chamber of Commerce, said he fears that any further delay of congressional approval of the Korea FTA will undermine the competitiveness of U.S. products abroad. He pointed to Colombia as well as South Korea.

"Chamber Pushes To Move Stalled Pacts," CongressDaily PM, November 23, 2009

U.S. multinationals used Sunday's three-year anniversary of the signing of a free-trade pact with Colombia and restlessness over 10 percent unemployment to ratchet up pressure on the White House and Congress to get moving on stalled trade deals. With trading partners and rivals such as Canada, India, the European Union and the Asia-Pacific region moving ahead with their own pacts, the United States risks being shut out of important job-growing markets, officials said.

"Obama Must Act on Trade, Critics Say," McClatchy Newspapers, November 21, 2009

During his first 10 months in office, as global trade contracted sharply, President Obama avoided pursuing free-trade pacts and limited his public moves on the trade front to high-profile and often politically popular retaliatory actions. Critics say he's playing defense when he should be playing offense. "There is no trade policy," said Fred Bergsten, a former senior Treasury Department official and the director of the Peterson Institute of International Economics, a Washington research group.

"Obama Touts Asia Trade to Create Jobs," Agence France Presse, November 21, 2009

Back from an Asia tour, President Barack Obama called Saturday for the United States to produce more goods to sell across the Pacific, touting trade as a way to revive the troubled US economy. Facing rising unemployment and slipping poll numbers, Obama assured the public that creating new jobs back home was his top priority on the weeklong tour that took him to Japan, Singapore, China and South Korea.

"Obama Finds a Welcoming Seoul," Wall Street Journal, November 20, 2009

U.S. President Barack Obama ended a sometimes difficult trip to Asia on Thursday by figuratively embracing South Korea and literally embracing its president. Mr. Obama and South Korean President Lee Myung-bak, whose administrations worked closely to respond to aggressive weapons testing by North Korea earlier this year, reaffirmed in a summit meeting their common views on security matters, and began to close a trade matter that has divided them.

"Amid Upturn in Relations, Obama Visits South Korea," Associated Press, November 19, 2009

America's relations with South Korea, a crucial Asian ally, were on an upswing as President Obama met with President Lee Myung-bak today. Obama, winding up his weeklong Asian journey, said at a joint news conference that he is committed to resolving issues that have stalled a free trade agreement between the United States and South Korea. Obama said today in Seoul that expanding trade ties would have economic and strategic benefits for both countries. He said Congress must recognize that US trade with South Korea doesn't have the same imbalances as with other Asian nations.

"Obama Urges Ratification of South Korean Free Trade Pact," MarketWatch, November 19, 2009

U.S. President Barack Obama on Thursday used his lone press conference in South Korea to push for ratification of a long-stalled free trade deal and to set a tone for nuclear-weapons talks next month with the North Korean regime. Obama called the trade agreement -- which was signed in 2007 but has yet to be ratified by either country -- part of a "win-win" relationship that would bolter strategic and economic ties with Korea, while also playing down the country's trade surplus with the U.S.

"KORUS FTA Likely to Get Boost Following Summit," Yonhap News Agency, November 19, 2009

The push for legislative approval of the pending free trade accord between South Korea and the United States could gain momentum following Thursday's summit between presidents Lee Myung-bak and Barack Obama, experts say.

"South Korea Offers Talks on Stalled US Trade Pact," Agence France Presse, November 19, 2009

South Korea said Thursday it is ready for talks to ease US automakers' concerns about a stalled free trade agreement, as US President Barack Obama cautioned that several issues must still be settled. The deal signed in June 2007 still awaits ratification by Congress amid US demands for greater market access for its cattlemen and carmakers. The delay is a potential irritant in otherwise close relations.

"Obama Voices Commitment to S.Korea Trade Agreement," Associated Press, November 18, 2009

President Barack Obama says he is committed to resolving issues that have stalled a free trade agreement between the United States and South Korea. Obama said Thursday in Seoul that expanding trade ties would have economic and strategic benefits for both countries. He said Congress must recognize that U.S. trade with South Korea doesn't have the same imbalances as with other Asian nations.

"Trumped on Trade; EU Takes Reins as U.S.-Korea Deal Stalls," Washington Times, November 18, 2009

Failure by the United States and South Korea to ratify a 2007 free trade agreement has American businesses fretting that European competitors may be about to outflank them. The long-languishing Korea-U.S. Free Trade Agreement (FTA) is widely expected to be on the agenda when Presidents Obama and Lee Myung-bak meet at their Seoul summit Thursday. Adding to criticism of U.S. trade policy aired at the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit in Singapore last weekend, Seoul is irked that the deal, signed in June 2007 after exhaustive negotiations, has not been ratified 2 1/2 years later.

"House Members Urge Movement On S. Korea," CongressDaily PM, November 13, 2009

A bipartisan group of 88 House members led by Washington Reps. Adam Smith, a Democrat, and Dave Reichert, a Republican, has written to President Obama urging him to get moving on a path forward for the U.S.-South Korea Free Trade Agreement as he meets with Asian leaders this weekend.

"Koreans in US to Campaign for FTA Ratification," KBS World News, November 13, 2009

Ethnic Koreans in the United States will begin a campaign to encourage U.S. senators and congressmen to ratify the Korea-U.S. free trade agreement. Ethnic Korean organizations, including a Korean residents group of northern Virginia, have launched a preparatory committee aimed at promoting FTA ratification and have vowed to begin a campaign to lobby for the treaty.

"Business Group Urges U.S. to Reach More Asia Trade Deals," Wall Street Journal, November 12, 2009

The U.S. needs to be more proactive in reaching trade deals with Asian nations or risk getting left behind as the region pursues its own free-trade pacts, the president of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce said Wednesday. Thomas Donohue, who is in Singapore to attend meetings on the sidelines of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit that President Barack Obama will attend over the weekend, said ratcheting up trade with Asia is crucial for the U.S. to remain competitive in the region, which accounts for half the global economy.

"US To Announce Results of Review on KORUS FTA," KBS World News, October 31, 2009

The United States will announce next week the results of the Obama administration's review on the South Korea-U.S. free trade agreement (FTA). Washington is expected to make the announcement during an event organized by the Chamber of Commerce on Thursday.

"S. Korea-EU deal could push U.S.: group," Associated Press, October 21, 2009

Progress between South Korea and the European Union in realizing their free trade agreement could serve as a catalyst to restore momentum to a stalled deal between the United States and Seoul, the head of a U.S. business group said. "I hope that the initialing of the Korea-EU FTA ... will light a fire under policy makers in Washington," Amy Jackson, the new president of the American Chamber of Commerce in Korea told reporters Monday.

"Governor Pushing for Fair Trade Agreement with South Korea," Omaha World-Herald, September 18, 2009

As Nebraska farmers and ranchers are checking out the latest innovations at Husker Harvest Days this week, Gov. Dave Heineman is trying to stir up more business for them overseas. He sent comments this week to the office of the U.S. trade representative, seeking congressional passage of the U.S.-Korea Free Trade Agreement. Agriculture right now needs expanded export markets, Heineman said Wednesday while touring the Husker Harvest Days farm show west of Grand Island.

"S. Korea to Offer More Incentives to Foreign Biz Investors," Yonhap News Agency, July 30, 2009

South Korea will enforce a plan this week to offer more incentives to foreign companies operating in the country that are vital for economic growth and job creation, the government said Thursday. The plan, which will go into effect on Friday, calls for the provision of more cash grants and rent-free use of land to foreign companies that are able to create large numbers of new jobs in the country, the Ministry of Knowledge Economy said.

"Envoy Calls for U.S. Approval of Korea FTA to Buttress Alliance," Yonhap News Agency, July 29, 2009

South Korean ambassador to the U.S. Han Duck-soo called on Congress Wednesday to approve a pending bilateral free trade deal, saying it will enhance the two nations' decades-old alliance. "The Korea-U.S. Free Trade Agreement, which is beneficial to both of our economies with its geopolitical significance for the Northeast Asian region, will be the cornerstone of strengthened partnership and friendship in the future," Han told a gathering at the Rayburn House Office Building to commemorate the 56th anniversary of the Korean War Armistice.

"U.S. to Work Diligently on Auto, Other Issues for Korea FTA's Ratification: Kirk," Yonhap News Agency, May 19, 2009

The United States will work diligently to resolve the auto and other issues impeding an early ratification of the pending free trade deal with South Korea, U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk said Monday. "We had a very candid but productive discussion about the domestic challenges that we both face in terms of going forward with this agreement," Kirk told a luncheon meeting at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.

"US, S Korea Envoys Discuss Stalled Free Trade Deal," Associated Press, May 15, 2009

Senior U.S. and South Korean trade envoys met Thursday to discuss an ambitious free trade agreement that has been stalled over U.S. lawmakers' worries it could hurt the already suffering American auto industry. The painstakingly negotiated deal to slash tariffs on goods and services must be ratified by lawmakers in both countries.

"Lawmakers Optimistic on KORUS FTA Ratification," Yonhap News Agency, May 7, 2009

Despite growing protectionism amid the worst recession in decades, a pending free trade agreement with South Korea could be ratified this summer if both sides make concessions, key members of Congress predicted Thursday. "I think we can address through a separate agreement the problems we have," Rep. Diane Watson (D-California) told a forum here sponsored by the Korea Economic Institute.

Obama Wants Progress on South Korea Free Trade: Official," Reuters, April 2, 2009

U.S. President Barack Obama told South Korean President Lee Myung-bak on Thursday problems remain on a stalled free trade deal between the two countries but that he wants to make progress, a U.S. official said. President Obama said that he understood there were difficulties on both sides on moving forward, but he said that he does want to make progress and staff should discuss how to move forward," the official said after the two leaders met on the sidelines of a G20 economic crisis summit in London. Obama also invited Lee to visit Washington for talks in mid-June, the official said.

"KORUS FTA Top Priority for Deputy USTR Nominee," KBS World News, January 5, 2009

The deputy U.S. Trade Representative nominee has vowed to seek strong and creative policies in dealing with key trade affairs. During a Senate Finance Committee confirmation hearing Thursday, Demetrios Marantis said the ratification of the South Korea-U.S. free trade agreement is one of the key issues to be settled.