The Colombia Trade Promotion Agreement was the topic as Deputy U.S. Trade Representative, Miriam Sapiro, testified before the House Committee on Ways and Means Subcommittee on Trade Thursday. Sapiro told the panel that the Colombia FTA holds the prospect of substantial benefits for U.S. workers, businesses, farmers and ranchers by eliminating tariffs on U.S. exports, in most cases upon entry into force.
Still, three areas of concern continue to stand in the way of the Colombia FTA. That's the protection of internationally recognized labor rights; prevention of violence against labor leaders and the prosecution of the perpetrators of such violence. Sapiro said that more needs to be done in this area and there is a window of opportunity. Sapiro is meeting with senior officials from the Colombian Government in Washington, D.C. to continue discussions.
Sapiro called on Congress to immediately support the United States' economic and strategic partnership with Colombia by renewing the Andean Trade Preference Act for as long as possible. She also called on Congress to keep faith with America's workers by renewing Trade Adjustment Assistance as soon as possible.