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April 29, 1992 PRESIDENT BUSH ON THE URUGUAY ROUND NEGOTIATIONS OF THE GATT "The Uruguay Round offers a vital opportunity to eliminate barriers to our goods, investment, services, and ideas." President George Bush May 1, 1991 Summary o Under President Bush's leadership, the United States is spearheading efforts to complete the Uruguay Round of multilateral trade negotiations, the most ambitious round in the history of the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT). The 108 nation members of GATT represent over 90 percent of world trade. The objective of the Uruguay Round negotiations is to strengthen and expand the global trading system by reducing trade barriers. o The Bush Administration's goals in the Round include sharply reducing trade barriers worldwide; extending GATT rules to services, investment, and intellectual property; and curbing trade subsidies that undercut American farm and industrial exports, while not reducing the effectiveness of U.S. laws against unfair trade. o President Bush is committed to obtaining a GATT agreement that will benefit American workers, farmers, and consumers; he will not accept an inadequate agreement just for the sake of an agreement. A Sound GATT Agreement Would Benefit the U.S. Economy o An open multilateral trading system is the best guarantee that U.S. export opportunities will continue to expand into the next century. The Uruguay Round is the most important initiative to expand these opportunities. A successful Uruguay Round would provide substantial benefits to the U.S. economy, including: -- Lower tariff and non-tariff barriers to manufactured products and other goods, which would substantially boost U.S. exports and could increase U.S. output by over $1 trillion over the next ten years; -- Rules to protect the intellectual property of U.S. entrepreneurs to reduce the $60 billion lost each year through theft and counterfeiting; -- New markets for U.S. services firms, which export over $140 billion annually and generate 90 percent of new U.S. jobs; -- Fair competition and open markets in agriculture to create new opportunities for American farmers, who lead the world with more than $40 billion in annual exports; -- Full participation of developing countries in the global trading system, which could increase U.S. exports by $200 billion between now and the year 2000; and -- Effective rules on dispute settlement, anti-dumping, subsidies, and import safeguards, to expand U.S. access to foreign markets and ensure fair trade in the U.S. market. Agriculture o One of President Bush's key objectives is to obtain a GATT agreement that contains major agricultural policy reforms, including commitments by GATT member nations to reduce trade- distorting internal support to farmers, open markets to imports, and cut export subsidies. o Agricultural reforms in the Uruguay Round would mark an historic departure from the costly protectionist measures that have flourished in that sector, largely outside GATT disciplines. These reforms would have significant benefits for farmers, taxpayers, and consumers in the United States and the rest of the world. o These reforms have been opposed by the European Community, which refuses to reduce subsidies that give EC farmers an unfair advantage in the world market. President Bush, supported by other GATT members, has demanded that any final GATT agreement include a commitment by all parties including the EC to drastically reduce these subsidies and to require their farmers to compete in the world market. Services o President Bush has insisted that global trade rules for services be established to expand access to global markets for U.S. services providers. President Bush is confident that U.S. services, such as banking, insurance, telecommunications, motion pictures, tourism, and construction, can out-compete their foreign counterparts if only they are allowed to compete on a level playing field. -- The United States already leads the world with $140 billion in services exports annually. Intellectual Property Intellectual Property Rules o Patented, copyrighted, and trademarked products are a growing source of foreign earnings to the U.S. economy. President Bush has pressed for a GATT agreement that will afford the highest level of protection to copyrights, patents, and other forms of intellectual property held by U.S. firms. The President also has insisted that the agreement must include strong sanctions for those countries that condone the piracy, infringement or violation of these rights. o The President's efforts to protect American know-how have already paid off. For example, in the most recent draft of the proposed agreement, computer software would be protected as literary work, the highest form of copyright protection allowed. Textile and Apparel o The current draft GATT agreement calls for removal of the quota system established by the 1974 Multi-Fiber Arrangement (MFA). One of President Bush's main objectives in the GATT negotiations has been to ensure that any such quota removal be conducted on a smooth and gradual basis in order to minimize the disruption to the U.S. textile and apparel industry. o The President's call for a sensible, responsible phaseout of the quotas has prevailed. The proposed draft agreement calls for a gradual phaseout of the MFA, which will allow the U.S. textile industry time to adjust to import competition and avoid severe disruption, appropriate safeguard procedures, improved procedures to deal with circumvention of quotas and important market-opening measures for U.S. textile and apparel exporters.


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