USTR - United States and Philippines Meet under Trade and Investment Framework Agreement
Office of the United States Trade Representative

 

United States and Philippines Meet under Trade and Investment Framework Agreement
05/09/2007
 

 

Washington D.C.U.S. and Philippine government officials today held constructive discussions on how to address outstanding bilateral issues and further deepen their trade and investment relations.

The wide-ranging discussion, held under the United States-Philippines Trade and Investment Framework Agreement (TIFA), was led by Assistant U.S. Trade Representative for Southeast Asia and the Pacific Barbara Weisel and Undersecretary of the Department of Trade and Industry Thomas Aquino.  The two sides talked about steps to enhance market access for a range of products, including agricultural, industrial and high technology goods.  They also reviewed tariff and customs policies, looking toward ways to facilitate trade.  In addition, they reviewed actions by the Philippine Government over the past year to strengthen intellectual property protection and enforcement and discussed additional steps that the Philippines could take to further enhance its intellectual property regime.

During the TIFA discussions, the two sides continued to seek opportunities to cooperate on regional initiatives in ASEAN and APEC that seek to build stronger trade and economic ties between the United States and ASEAN and in the Asia Pacific region.  They also agreed to continue their close consultations on working together to achieve an ambitious outcome in the ongoing WTO Doha negotiations.

Background

The Philippines is currently the United States’ 28th largest trading partner with $17.3 billion in total two-way goods trade during 2006.  U.S. exports to the Philippines totaled $7.6 billion in 2006, up 10.5 percent from the previous year.  U.S. imports from the Philippines totaled $9.7 billion in 2006, up 4.8 percent.  Meanwhile, U.S. foreign direct investment in the Philippines rose 10.7 percent in 2005 from the previous year to $6.6 billion (latest available data).

The Philippines is part of the ten-member Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), which collectively is the fourth largest market for U.S. exports. With continued strong economic growth anticipated in ASEAN countries and a regional population of about 500 million, the United States anticipates significant trade and investment opportunities for U.S. companies in this region and has established a number of specific initiatives to further this relationship.

 
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