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United States-Korea Free Trade Agreement Implementation Act

Floor Speech

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Date:
Location: Washington, DC

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Mr. PENCE. I thank the gentleman for yielding.

Madam Speaker, this is a difficult time in the life of our Nation--9.1 percent unemployment nationally, and millions of Americans families are hurting. And the American people are looking to Washington, D.C., more for solutions than for fights. And today with the Korea free trade agreement, with the Colombia trade promotion agreement and the Panama trade promotion agreement, Washington, D.C., in a bipartisan way is coming together with a solution that will help to create jobs and get this economy moving again, and I heartily support it.

I want to commend Chairman Camp, Ranking Member Levin, Speaker Boehner, Leader Cantor, and even the President of the United States for working together in common purpose to bring us to this important moment. I've always believed that trade means jobs. And I say with some pride, that's especially true in the Hoosier State.

Indiana is uniquely poised to take advantage of the free trade opportunities provided in these agreements, and I'm grateful for the chance to elaborate on that. I often say in Indiana we do two things well: we make things and we grow things. The truth is that in the State of Indiana, we do a lot more than that. But in Indiana, what we grow and what we build is really at the heart of the Hoosier economy, and expanding global markets for what we make and for what we grow is going to create jobs in Indiana, in the city and on the farm.

The American Farm Bureau estimates that implementing these three agreements will increase agricultural exports in Indiana by nearly $55 million a year, creating 500 new agricultural-related jobs.

The Korea agreement that we debate at this moment will eliminate $1.3 billion in tariffs on U.S. exports that cover many products Indiana is known for, like feed corn, soybeans, and dairy. It will eliminate those duties while other duties on products like pork will be phased out. Other industries, like Indiana's growing life sciences sector, will benefit.

Let me say again, I rise in support of these agreements because I believe that trade means jobs. And America and Indiana need jobs like never before. I urge my colleagues in both parties to join in this bipartisan effort, and let's move this bill.

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