U.S. Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL), Chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, today welcomed the announcement by Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) that they had reached agreement on Senate consideration of the pending Free Trade Agreements with Colombia, Panama, and South Korea. Removal of this obstacle in the Senate may allow Congress to vote on the FTAs as early as September. Statement by Ros-Lehtinen:
"The announcement by Senators Reid and McConnell that they have reached an agreement on moving forward with the long-stalled Colombia, Panama, and South Korea Free Trade Agreements is very good news for the U.S. economy, particularly in South Florida, in the creation of thousands of new jobs through increased exports.
"In addition to their economic benefits, these agreements are vitally important to our national security interests in Latin America and East Asia. Colombia, Panama, and South Korea are key allies and passage of these agreements will demonstrate our ongoing commitment to their security, prosperity, and stability.
"Congress may finally be able to vote on these much-needed Free Trade Agreements as early as September, if the Obama Administration honors its commitment to move forward as quickly as possible."