Yesterday, Deputy Secretary Bruce Andrews visited Phoenix, Arizona to learn about local businesses who export goods. He first joined Phoenix Mayor Greg Stanton and APS BioGroup President & CEO Bob Davies for a tour of APS BioGroup’s manufacturing facility. The Phoenix-based producer and manufacturer of health products exports their goods to 57 countries. Exports have been part of the company since its inception, and in 2011, it received the President’s “E” award for increasing U.S. exports.
After seeing APS BioGroup’s facilities and meeting employees, Deputy Secretary Andrews talked with local business leaders about the importance of trade and exports to the local, regional and national economy. Exports support 11.3 million jobs nationwide, and they support nearly 96,000 jobs in Arizona. In 2013, Phoenix exported $11.5 billion, making the city the nation’s 27th largest export market.
In addition to exports, American prosperity is directly tied to our ability to reach new markets and new customers beyond our borders. To gain access to the 95 percent of consumers who live outside the United States, it is crucial that Congress pass trade promotion legislation, which will enable the Obama Administration to negotiate two major trade agreements. The Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) and the Transatlantic Trade & Investment Partnership (TTIP) are comprehensive, high-standard trade and investment agreements that are currently in the midst of negotiation. Reaching an agreement on TPP and TTIP will give American companies a level playing field to compete with other countries for opportunities with approximately 65 percent of the world’s GDP. American access to markets abroad will also enable U.S. businesses to expand, hire more workers, and pay better wages at home.
During a roundtable with Phoenix business leaders and Mayor Stanton, Deputy Secretary Andrews highlighted the advantages of America implementing new trade agreements around the world, which consist of promoting our values, raising standards, and maintaining a global, competitive edge for our businesses. With our leadership and involvement in TPP, we are bringing together critical strategic alliances with partners around the world – ensuring that the United States continues to shape and define the global economic culture. Currently, the U.S. has 14 trade agreements in force with 20 countries. Mexico is Arizona’s largest export market, representing 36.4 percent of the state’s total merchandise exports. Countries around the world want American goods, and these new trade agreements will help our businesses get their goods and services into more people and countries, creating jobs and growth.