Tag Archives: world trade organization

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GPEC position aligned with WTO ruling on tariffs

A ruling by the World Trade Organization earlier last week affirmed the position the Greater Phoenix Economic Council held in 2012, opposing the countervailing duties placed on Chinese-manufactured solar panels.

The ruling by the World Trade Organization (WTO) counters the position taken by the International Trade Commission (ITC) in 2012, which imposed tariffs on Chinese-manufactured photovoltaic cells and modules. In a formal letter to the US Department of Commerce, the Greater Phoenix Economic Council (GPEC) strongly opposed the tariffs on the grounds the duties would have a detrimental effect on the existing solar and renewable energy industry in the Greater Phoenix region.

“We are encouraged by the decision of the WTO, and are optimistic the US will move quickly to reverse its course on these tariffs,” said Barry Broome, president and CEO of the Greater Phoenix Economic Council. “Our state leaders have enacted sound pro-business policies, including renewable energy tax credits, which have resulted in significant investment to the region. The 2012 decision by the ITC was completely antithetical to those efforts.”

The ITC is currently considering additional rounds of countervailing duties on solar goods from China; however the recent announcement from the WTO suggests bringing the US measures in line with the ruling offered by the WTO.

For additional information on GPEC’s previous statements regarding this issue, please visit www.gpec.org/tariff.

Russia PNTR

AZ Exporters Stand To Benefit If Congress Passes Russia PNTR Legislation

Russia PNTR Legislation could help create more jobs in Arizona

Washington – Business Roundtable applauded the leadership of Senator John McCain for introducing bipartisan legislation, with three of his Senate colleagues, to provide permanent normal trade relations (PNTR) with Russia. When Russia joins the World Trade Organization (WTO) later this summer, exporters in Arizona and throughout the United States could increase trade with the world’s ninth largest economy. But Congress must first act – by approving Russia PNTR legislation – before Arizona and other states can enjoy the full benefits of Russia’s market-opening WTO commitments.

“This is the most significant trade opportunity this year to help support American jobs and grow the United States economy,” said Business Roundtable (BRT) President John Engler. “Congressional action on PNTR will benefit Arizona and its companies, farmers and workers. We thank Senator McCain for his leadership on this important issue.”

The stakes are high for Arizona. As reported in a recent BRT economic analysis, Arizona exported $24.4 million worth of goods to Russia in 2011, which directly supported an estimated 70 jobs. If Congress passes Russia PNTR, these numbers are expected to grow. If Congress fails to act on PNTR, these numbers will likely fall, as foreign competitors in Europe, Asia and elsewhere will be able to take full advantage of Russia’s WTO commitments, but Arizona and its companies will not.

Russia’s WTO membership means, among other things, that it must:

  • Lower its tariffs
  • Provide greater market transparency
  • Protect intellectual property rights
  • Abide by the WTO’s rules of international trade

Business Roundtable, an association of chief executives of leading U.S. companies, has launched a 50-day campaign to increase pressure on Congress to pass Russia PNTR by the August recess. Russia PNTR is BRT’s top trade priority for 2012.

For further information on current U.S. trade with Russia on a state-by-state basis and the potential to grow exports from each state to Russia if PNTR legislation is passed, visit www.brt.org/Russia.

China Trade Deficit Causes 50,000 Lost Jobs In Arizona

China Trade Deficit Causes 50,000 Lost Jobs In Arizona

China Trade Deficit Causes 50,000 Lost Jobs In Arizona

Since 2001, the trade deficit with China has made a major impact on the United States. 2.8 million jobs have been lost, mainly in the manufacturing industry. However, now the deficit is hitting closer to home.

Arizona itself has experienced a job loss of 50,000 jobs, according to a study released by the Economic Policy Institute.

The growing trade deficit began when China entered the World Trade Organization. However, one of the most major causes of the ever-growing deficit with China is its illegal currency manipulation, according to Robert E. Scott, the EPI’s Director of Trade and Manufacturing Policy Research.

China’s currency, the yuan, does not fluctuate freely against the dollar. Instead, it is programmed in order to help increase China’s exports.

The most major losses that occurred nationwide were in the computer and electronic parts industries, as 909,000 jobs were lost. The imports of the industries accounted for more than 44 percent of the $194 billion increase in the trade deficit between 2001 and 2010.

“Arizona urgently needs more manufacturing jobs to put people back to work, but our out-of-control trade deficit with China makes that impossible,” says Scott Paul, executive director of the Alliance for American Manufacturing.

In addition to Arizona, the deficit has also impacted each congressional district, including the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico.

China’s share of the total U.S. non-oil trade deficit has risen from 69.6 percent in 2008 to 78.3 percent in 2010. In addition to the currency, this is due to state-owned enterprises, industrial subsidies, property theft and piracy, innovation policies, rare earth mineral export restrictions and other trade-distorting practices.

In response to the deficit, Paul states, “Reducing our trade deficit and stopping China’s unfair trade practices will grow jobs, lower our trade deficit and put the United States on sound fiscal footing.”

By “challenging China’s currency manipulation,” there will be an increase in federal revenue, Paul said. Paul also said that China must raise the value of the yuan by at least 28.5 percent, otherwise job losses are going to continue to increase.