U.S. Department of State
U.S. Department of State
Other State Department Archive SitesU.S. Department of State
U.S. Department of State
U.S. Department of State
U.S. Department of State
U.S. Department of State
U.S. Department of State
U.S. Department of State
Home Issues & Press Travel & Business Countries Youth & Education Careers About State Video

Submission to Congress of the Colombia Trade Promotion Agreement

Statement by Secretary Condoleezza Rice
Washington, DC
April 7, 2008

This morning the President signed a letter to Congress that will transmit legislation to implement the United States – Colombia Trade Promotion Agreement. Over the past year, the Administration has worked closely with Congress on seeking a way forward on approval of this agreement and remains committed to reaching a bipartisan solution. However, time is running short, and the issues are too important for this agreement not to be considered.

Passage of this agreement is both a matter of national security for the United States as well as clearly in our economic interest. The agreement will promote opportunity, stability, and growth in a key partner – goals that successive U.S. administrations and Congresses, in a bipartisan manner, have long supported.

The people of Colombia have made impressive gains in building a peaceful, inclusive democracy. Thousands of guerrilla and paramilitary fighters have demobilized, the economy is growing, poverty is dropping, and respect for human rights and the rule of law has improved dramatically. Colombians want to build on these accomplishments and consolidate lasting prosperity and security. It is in our interest for them to succeed, and this agreement is the most effective tool through which we can help them do so.

The agreement will also replace Colombia’s one-way access to our market with permanent, two-way free trade that benefits American businesses, workers, and farmers. When implemented, this agreement will remove barriers that now hinder the competitiveness of American agricultural and manufactured goods in Colombia, effectively creating new markets for U.S. producers and new opportunities for American workers. Last year, 40 percent of our economic growth came from exports of U.S.-produced goods. Lowering barriers to trade, as this agreement does, is a win for America.

I urge Congress to work with the Administration and approve swiftly the U.S.-Colombia Trade Promotion Agreement.

2008/252



Released on April 7, 2008

  Back to top

U.S. Department of State
USA.govU.S. Department of StateUpdates  |   Frequent Questions  |   Contact Us  |   Email this Page  |   Subject Index  |   Search
The Office of Electronic Information, Bureau of Public Affairs, manages this site as a portal for information from the U.S. State Department. External links to other Internet sites should not be construed as an endorsement of the views or privacy policies contained therein.
About state.gov  |   Privacy Notice  |   FOIA  |   Copyright Information  |   Other U.S. Government Information

Published by the U.S. Department of State Website at http://www.state.gov maintained by the Bureau of Public Affairs.