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Sanchez On U.S.-Russia Trade


TV sets seen on a shop display in Moscow Russia. (file) Trade in goods between Russia and the United States stood at just under $40 billion in 2012.

The United States will continue to seek ways to expand its economic relationship with Russia.

One of the United States' priorities with regard to Russia has been to increase bilateral trade and investment ties. And results have been forthcoming in the past few years, said U.S. Under Secretary of Commerce for International Trade Francisco Sanchez.

Speaking at the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum, he noted that U.S. exports to Russia rose 29 percent over the 2011 level, to $10.7 billion, in 2012. Trade in goods between Russia and the United States stood at just under $40 billion in 2012.


But there is room for growth in both directions, said Mr. Sanchez. For example, Russia is the 6th largest economy in the world, but only the United States' 20th largest trading partner. "The gap can be closed," said Under Secretary Sanchez, "and we can both sell and build more in one another's markets."

One of the most noteworthy successes in the economic relationship between the U.S. and Russia is Russia's entry into the World Trade Organization in 2012. Additional developments that help facilitate trade between the U.S. and Russia include the granting permanent Normal Trade Relations and the implementation of a new bilateral visa agreement last September.

The United States envisions enhancing economic cooperation with Russia by increasing two-way direct investment as well as trade, facilitating bilateral trade and investment in sectors and regions with high growth potential and intensifying U.S. and Russian government consultation with the private sector.

The United States is working with its Russian counterparts to address issues of transparency in government procurement practices, expanded trade, investment and innovation in high-potential sectors such as healthcare technologies, transportation, and information and communication technology, among other industries.

The ultimate goal is to make it easier for companies to do business with each other and for products to flow freely across U.S.-Russian markets. Incorporating international standards into Russia's own standards practices can help Russia meet its WTO obligations in the area of technical barriers to trade.

The United States also wants to encourage Russian investment in the U.S and U.S. direct investment in Russia. The total stock of Russian foreign direct investment in the United States now equals almost $8 billion. It is a figure that has significant room for growth.

The United States will continue to seek ways to expand its economic relationship with Russia.
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