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The Office of the United States Trade Representative

USTR Focus on Services

In the United States, service industries account for about 4 out 5 jobs, 68 percent of GDP, and 79 percent of real GDP growth.  Services also account for nearly 70 percent of global GDP, and very recently, the number of people around the world who work in services surpassed the number who farm.  Countries benefit from the trade of services for the same reasons they benefit from trade in goods: it lowers costs for consumers and businesses, enhances competition and innovation, improves choice and quality, attracts investment, diffuses knowledge and technology, and allows for efficient allocation of resources.

Barriers to services trade are generally greater than for goods, with the corollary that lowering services barriers will provide the greatest payoff for the U.S. and world economy.  By one estimate, the U.S. economy would gain $460 billion from the removal of services trade barriers. Developing countries, which tend to maintain relatively high services trade barriers, have also increasingly come to view services liberalization as a key development strategy that will not only help modernize their services infrastructure, but also help unlock the potential of their manufacturing and agricultural sectors.

In its trade negotiations, the United States looks to promote open and transparent trade in services, and to let its world class service providers compete on a level playing field.

U.S. Services Offers
Selection 2005 Revised U.S. Services Offer
Selection 2003 Initial U.S. Services Offer
More on Services
Selection Read a discussion of WTO commitments which have been offered by the United States for R&D services and for storage and warehousing services
Selection WTO: General Agreement on Trade in Services
Selection WTO Legal Texts on Services
Selection Telecommunications and E-Commerce
Document Library
Selection Press Releases
Selection Fact Sheets
Selection Speeches
Selection Op-Eds