USW unhappy with Korea trade deal

Dec 09, 2010 | 11:57 AM |

The United Steelworkers union (USW) believes a recently renegotiated free-trade agreement with South Korea will put the United States at a global trade disadvantage by encouraging additional imports from Korea but not allowing U.S. exports to increase in-kind.

The Obama administration recently concluded negotiations with the South Korean government on the revised terms of the Korea-U.S. (KorUS) Free-Trade Agreement. The union said that revisions fought for by President Obama, U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk and a team of officials working on the negotiations were important improvements on the terms agreed to by the Bush administration and deserved recognition.

However, the USW believes the revised agreement falls far short of ensuring U.S. workers and businesses get a fair deal.

"This was not an easy decision, as the Obama administration has made effective implementation and enforcement of trade laws and agreements a priority," the union said Thursday. "Their efforts have advanced the interests of USW members in the steel, tire, green technology and other important sectors. Their record in these areas represents a fundamental change in the administration of trade policy and is deeply appreciated."....

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