Washington, DC (PRWEB) March 17, 2005
The Coalition of Service Industries (CSI) today announced its strong support for President BushÂs nomination of Congressman Robert J. Portman (R-OH) as the new United States Trade Representative (USTR).
ÂAt this critical time in bilateral, regional, and multilateral trade negotiations, Congressman PortmanÂs nomination reaffirms the Bush administrationÂs commitment to furthering the United States trade agenda,Â said Norman Sorensen, Chairman, CSI and President & CEO, Principal
International, Inc. ÂHis long-standing cooperation with Congressman Cardin on pension and retirement issues has demonstrated his ability to advance public policy issues on a bipartisan basis. This bipartisanship will be necessary to advance pending trade legislation.Â
Many challenges await the incoming USTR, particularly the services negotiations within the context of the Doha Development Agenda. CSI noted that many World Trade Organization (WTO) members have yet to submit initial services offers, which were due in March 2003, and those that have been submitted provide little new liberalization. ÂCongressman Portman should
encourage all WTO members that have not tabled services offers to do so quickly, and urge those that have, to present revised and improved offers by the May 2005 deadline,Â Sorensen said.
The U.S. services sector accounts for about 80 percent of GDP and continues to be the engine of job creation in the United States. Services account for 80 percent of U.S. private sector employment; between 1993 and 2003, services added 17 million new U.S. jobs, and of the 19.2 million new American jobs forecast to be created by 2012, 90 percent will be in the services sector. Services accounted for $338 billion in US exports last year, with a surplus of $48.5 billion.
ÂWe hope Congressman Portman will call upon trade ministers to take advantage of the rare opportunity that the Doha Round represents for the multilateral liberalization of services across the spectrum of service industries,Â said Robert Vastine, President of CSI. ÂWe look forward to his swift confirmation by the Senate, and to working with him in the coming years.Â
Contact: John Goyer
(202) 289-7460 x22