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Ask The Ambassador: The U.S.-Korea Trade Agreement and Jobs

We recently received a question from Anna in Maryland about the U.S.-Korea trade agreement and growing American jobs.

"In light of the recent FTA with Korea, will that increase or have a significant impact on U.S. jobs? If so, in what industries may we see this impact take place?"

Ambassador Kirk responds:

"The U.S.-South Korea trade agreement is estimated to increase U.S. exports to Korea by $10-$11 billion annually. And that is just the result of removing South Korea’s tariffs on U.S. goods. All these increased exports are estimated to support at least 70,000 additional U.S. jobs. But it does not stop there.

When you add in the effects of the agreement’s many provisions that eliminate non-tariff barriers and strengthen the protection of intellectual property, for example, we believe the actual increase in U.S. exports will be even higher, which means more U.S. jobs. Also, Korea has a $580 billion services market, where the U.S. already competes very strongly. The agreement opens up that services market even more, which will mean even more exports of American services to Korea, which in turn means even more U.S. jobs.

With South Korea being a developed, $1 trillion economy, the agreement will benefit American exporters – and therefore help create additional jobs – in a broad range of industries and sectors, from machinery, aerospace, and medical technology, to express delivery services and insurance, and most everything in between."

Thank you for continuing our dialogue on trade. Please keep submitting your questions and comments for the Ambassador.