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Bush On Free Trade

President George W. Bush says that the best way to lift people out of poverty is through trade and investment:

“A nation that is open and trading with the world will create economic rewards that far exceed anything they could get through foreign aid. During the 1990s, developing nations that significantly lowered tariffs saw their per capita income grow about three times faster than other developing countries. Open markets ignite growth, encourage investment, increase transparency, strengthen the rule of law, and help countries help themselves.”

Officials of the one-hundred-fifty-one member-nations of the World Trade Organization, including the countries of Latin America, now have a chance to open markets around the world by successfully concluding the Doha Round of trade talks, says Mr. Bush. Those talks are aimed, he says, at lowering trade barriers around the world:

“A successful Doha outcome would mean real and substantial openings in agriculture, goods, and services -- and real and substantial reductions in trade-distorting subsidies. The world’s largest trading nations, including major developing countries, have a special responsibility to make the tough political decisions to reduce trade barriers. America has the will and flexibility to make those necessary decisions.”

President Bush says the United States will continue to pursue agreements that expand trade and investment wherever it can:

“We recently signed free trade agreements with Peru, Colombia, Panama, and South Korea. These agreements embody the values of open markets -- transparent and fair regulation, respect for private property, and resolving disputes under international law rules.”

The United States Congress, says President Bush, should approve these free trade agreements as soon as possible.