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Ambassador Kirk Highlights the Importance of Trade in the Western Hemisphere

This morning, Ambassador Ron Kirk spoke at a breakfast hosted by the Council of the Americas at the United States Capitol. The breakfast was attended by Members of Congress, including Rep. Charles Rangel (D-NY), Rep. Henry Cuellar (D-TX), Rep. Sam Farr (D-CA), Rep. James Moran (D-VA), Rep. Gregory Meeks (D-NY), and board members from the Council of the Americas. Ambassador John Negroponte, Chairman of the Council of the Americas, welcomed Ambassador Kirk and spoke of the Council’s interest in the pending trade agreements with Colombia and Panama.

Ambassador Kirk spoke about the important role the Western Hemisphere plays in the overall trade agenda. In addition, Ambassador Kirk discussed the current pending trade agreements with South Korea, Colombia and Panama. Ambassador Kirk also answered questions and stressed the importance of Trade Adjustment Assistance to American workers, business owners, farmers and ranchers.

Ambassador Kirk at the Council of the AmericasAmbassador Kirk speaks at a breakfast hosted by the Council of the Americas

The Office of the United States Trade Representative has an Office of the Western Hemisphere. This office leads the negotiation and implementation of U.S. trade agreements in the Western Hemisphere. It also leads policy development and coordination of Trans-Pacific Economic Partnership (TPP) negotiations as they relate to countries in the Western Hemisphere.

The largest export markets for the United States in the Western Hemisphere are Canada ($204.7 billion), Mexico ($129.0 billion), Brazil ($26.2 billion), Colombia ($9.5 billion) and Chile ($9.4 billion).