Saturday, October 15, 2011

Mitt Romney: Open Markets on Terms that Work for America

The following press release was posted at Mitt Romney's Website:

“As president, I will work aggressively to open new markets for our goods and services by forging relationships with other nations committed to the principles of free trade.” – Mitt Romney

Mitt Romney calls for a renewed American commitment to opening global markets for the nation’s goods and services. Romney criticized President Obama for falling asleep at the wheel on this crucial issue for the American economy and failing to initiate a single new trade agreement during his presidency while stalling those already underway when he took office.

“Ninety-five percent of the world’s consumers are beyond our borders,” said

Romney. “While we sit on the sidelines, the EU is making deals. China is making deals. And American competitiveness suffers.”

Romney emphasized that free trade only works if all parties adhere to their commitments, open their markets, and embrace competition. He singled out China as an offender, and committed to confronting it over its continued flouting of international commitments.

“As president, I will present China with a clear choice,” said Romney. “Either abide by your commitments, open your markets, and respect our property, or else the days of open access to our markets, our ideas, and our companies, are over.”

Romney spelled out the specific policies he would pursue to expand American access to foreign markets, grow exports, and create jobs:

Advance Free Trade Agreements 

Promptly submit trade agreements to Congress instead of using them as political bargaining chips, and continue to expand the zone of countries in which American companies are welcomed to compete:
  • Reestablish the President’s Trade Promotion Authority
  • Conclude Trans-Pacific Partnership with key Asian allies
  • Pursue new bilateral agreements, focusing on South America
Create A Reagan Economic Zone 

Forge a new partnership with like-minded nations genuinely committed to open markets and fair competition:
  • Establish agreements focused on areas of particular interest to the United States like services and intellectual property
  • Provide unparalleled, mutual market access to all participants
  • Welcome the participation of any nation that abides by the principles of free trade and promotes competition on fair terms
  • Work together to pressure other nations to play by the rules
Increase Enforcement Resources 

Give the Commerce Department, the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative, and Customs and Border Protection the tools and support to vigorously protect American trading interests: 
  • Crack down on imports that circumvent trade rules or violate intellectual property rights
  • Pursue all WTO claims against other countries engaging in unfair trade practices at the expense of American businesses
  • Encourage American businesses to come forward with complaints and support their efforts to pursue remedies
Confront China Directly 

Lay out a clear series of steps that the Chinese must take to become a responsible participant in the global economy, and a clear series of consequences that would accompany failure to make rapid progress down that path, such as:

If China continues to block procurement from foreign firms,
  • End U.S. government procurement from China
If China continues to manipulate its currency,
  • Formally declare China to be a currency manipulator
  • Impose associated countervailing duties
If China continues to unfairly subsidize its domestic producers, interfere with foreign competitors, and pursue an “indigenous innovation” policy by coercing and stealing from foreign firms,
  • Impose punitive tariffs on Chinese products for which China provides anti-competitive assistance
  • Work with other developed nations to impose intellectual property sanctions, blocking the transfer into China of technologies that China has prioritized
In response to all of these practices,
  •  Use Reagan Economic Zone to confer benefits on genuine free trading nations from which China is excluded so long as its unfair practices continue.

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