On 15 March 2012, the United States-Korea trade agreement entered into force. This agreement is the United States’ most commercially significant free trade agreement in almost 20 years. In December 2010, President Obama announced the successful resolution of outstanding issues with the agreement. With entry into force, it will support at least 70,000 additional American jobs from increased goods exports alone, with even more jobs potential from the further opening of Korea’s large services market to American firms, and other measures.
Under this new Free Trade Agreement, almost 80% of US exports to Korea of consumer and industrial products became duty free on 15 March 2012. Almost 95% of bilateral trade in consumer and industrial products will become duty free within 5 years. While, most remaining tariffs will be eliminated within 10 years.
The US International Trade Commission estimates that the reduction of Korean tariffs and tariff-rate quotas on goods alone will add $10-$12 billion to annual US Gross Domestic Product and around $10 billion annual merchandise exports to Korea.
Ambassador Ron Kirk, the United States Trade Representative commented that:
Korea’s doors are wide open for Made-in-America exports that will support well-paying jobs here at home. From manufactured goods to telecommunications services to agricultural products, more Americans can get back to work making merchandise, providing services, and growing crops for export to Korea. The US-Korea agreement is a landmark deal with an important ally. It was on the leading edge of President Obama’s drive with an important ally. It was on the leading edge of President Obama’s drive to craft trade policy that addresses the real barriers that our exporters and workers face, and we are pleased that it will start generating benefits today in both the United States and Korea.
There is no doubt that Made-In-America fashion goods will benefit from this new Free Trade Agreement.
From your legal fashionista,