CSIS?s Meredith Broadbent, holder of the Scholl Chair in International Business, moderated a wide-ranging, bipartisan discussion with six former U.S. Trade Representatives on the key challenges facing the U.S. trade agenda in 2011. The panel examined the pending free trade agreements with Colombia, Panama, and South Korea; the ongoing Trans-Pacific Partnership negotiations; American competitiveness; and China?s role in global trade. Amb. Carla Hills explained the United States? historic leadership on trade and the need to revive that leadership going forward. Amb. William Brock argued that blaming other countries for job losses distracts us from solving education, tax, and regulatory policy problems that hinder U.S. competitiveness. Amb. Susan Schwab discussed tension between the executive branch and Congress over pending free trade agreements with Colombia, Panama, and South Korea and the status of Russia's WTO accession. Amb. Charlene Barshefsky spoke about China?s growing economic importance and the need for a more robust, more direct China agenda. Sen. Rob Portman argued that job growth and increased trade go hand in hand, but called for better enforcement of existing rules and action on Chinese currency manipulation. Amb. Clayton Yeutter stressed the importance of the Trans-Pacific Partnership agreement as a model, if successful, for future plurilateral trade negotiations.
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