On Wednesday, the U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk announced that the U.S.-Panama Trade Promotion Agreement entered into force. The trade agreement with Panama is the last one to go into force since the South Korea, Colombia and Panama trade agreements were signed into law in October 2011.
The implementation of the U.S.-Panama Trade Promotion Agreement is especially good news for Kansas farmers, ranchers, manufacturers, and other job creators. One in 15 jobs in Kansas depends on trade, and Kansas export sales totaled $9.93 billion in 2010. Opening new markets will increase economic growth and revenue across Kansas and the United States as a whole.
I am proud to be a member of the Ways and Means Committee, which helped pass trade agreements with Colombia, South Korea and Panama after they languished in a gridlocked Congress for six years.
While millions of Americans are still struggling during these tough economic times, Congress must take every opportunity to help create jobs and increase paychecks here at home. I hope the Ways and Means Committee will be able to garner similar support for the next key issue for America's job creators: a fundamental and comprehensive overhaul of the tax code.