AIA Statement on House Passing Trade Promotion Authority Legislation

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Stephen Simchak, director of international affairs for the American Insurance Association (AIA), issued a statement today praising the U.S. House of Representatives for passing “Trade Promotion Authority” (TPA) legislation by a vote of 218 to 208.

Stephen Simchak, director of international affairs for the American Insurance Association (AIA), issued a statement today praising the U.S. House of Representatives for passing “Trade Promotion Authority” (TPA) legislation by a vote of 218 to 208. House approval of stand-alone TPA legislation, which follows previous House and Senate votes on a package of trade-related bills, now must be considered by the Senate. The bill outlines the congressional ratification procedures for the consideration of trade agreements including, the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP), the Trade in Services Agreement (TiSA), and the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP), once they are completed. Under the legislation, Congress would agree to take a straight up-or-down vote on trade agreements that the Administration has negotiated. It also lists Congress' priorities for trade agreements and requires the Administration to consult with Congress throughout such negotiations. Trade Promotion Authority (TPA) last expired in 2007.

Mr. Simchak's statement follows:

“AIA applauds the House for passing TPA legislation. Trade Promotion Authority will be essential for the ratification of trade agreements including the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP), the Trade in Services Agreement (TiSA), and the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP). TPA assures the Congress that it has the ability to set clear negotiating priorities and that the Administration will consult with Congress during trade negotiations.

“International trade agreements are essential for creating the conditions that allow U.S. insurers to expand and compete abroad on a level playing field. It is estimated that if all barriers to U.S. insurers were reduced, U.S. insurance exports would increase by nearly $40 billion. Insurance trade and investment liberalization abroad leads to job growth here in the U.S. Jobs in insurance and other financial services industries that are related to international trade pay $20,000 per year more on average than jobs unrelated to international trade.

“AIA looks forward to continuing to work with congressional leaders to pass TPA in the Senate. Final passage will enable the U.S. to ratify key trade agreements under TPA procedures that will open markets to U.S. insurers and create economic opportunity at home and abroad.”

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