Congressman Pete Olson

Representing the 22nd District of Texas

OLSON STATEMENT ON HOUSE PASSAGE OF FREE TRADE BILLS

October 12, 2011
Press Release

Washington, DC– Rep. Pete Olson (R-Sugar Land) issued the following statement in support of the South Korea, Colombia, and Panama free trade agreements with the United States that passed the House today:

"Passing these free trade agreements is a critical step in creating American jobs. These agreements will establish a more level playing field for American businesses by helping open more foreign markets for our products and services, and making it easier for American businesses to compete in the global economy.

“In Texas’ 22nd District alone, exports support over 107,000 jobs.  Texas ranksfirst among all states in total exports, totaling over $190 billion and 3,000,000 Texas jobs are related to trade. Free trade means more American businesses making more money that can be used to expand and grow American jobs. Let’s export American goods and services, not American jobs."

The U.S.-Korea Trade Agreement will help grow the economy and support jobs by opening new markets for key Texas exports such as chemical manufactures, computers and electronics products, machinery and agriculture.   

The U.S.-Panama Trade Promotion Agreement would ensure that U.S and Texas firms have an opportunity to participate on a competitive basis for the construction of Panama Canal expansion project – which will have a direct impact on the Port of Houston.   

The U.S.-Colombia Trade Promotion Agreement levels the playing field for Texas exports -- currently ranked second -- to Colombia.  With the enactment of the trade agreement, this fast-growing regional market has a potential duty-free savings of $180.6 million. 

Click here to view Olson's floor speech given today in support of the free trade agreements. The Senate is also expected to pass these free trade bills shortly.

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Media Contact: Melissa Kelly

202-225-5951