Graves: Failure to Expand Trade “Detrimental”

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Washington, Apr 28, 2010 | Alexandra Haynes ((202) 225-5821) | comments

Today, the House Small Business Committee held a hearing to examine small business trade policies.  Ranking Member Sam Graves (R-MO) focused on the benefits of increased global market access for small businesses, and stressed that failure to expand trade opportunities in the near future could be “detrimental” to small businesses and the United States’ economy. 

Ranking Member Graves said, “With 95 percent of the world’s consumers living outside the U.S., it is clear that expanding trade opportunities for small businesses could dramatically fuel development and increase revenue.  Currently, free trade agreements with Panama, Columbia, and South Korea are awaiting Congressional action.  Creating more market access for small businesses through the passage of these trade agreements is one of the best things Congress can do to help small businesses and improve the American economy.

“The benefits of opening market access are obvious and plentiful, but failure to expand trade opportunities in the near future could prove detrimental to our economy.  The European Union and countries like Canada are eager to enter into a trade agreements and displace our market presence.  The time to act is now.”

During the hearing, Committee Members heard testimony from Mr. Drew Greenblatt, President of Marlin Steel Wire Products LLC in Baltimore, Maryland.  In his testimony, Mr. Greenblatt cited U.S. Department of Treasury research that showed that more than 50 million American workers are employed by firms that engage in international trade.  This sum represents about 40 percent of the private sector workforce.  Mr. Greenblatt urged Congress to support any pending free trade agreement and to find a more effective trade policy that opens foreign markets, boosts exports, and creates jobs.

Ranking Member Graves and House Small Business Committee Republicans are committed to creating more market access for small businesses through the passage of free trade agreements. 

For video of the hearing, click here.

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