House Committee on Ways and Means Republican Leader Kevin Brady (R-TX) and Trade Subcommittee Republican Leader Adrian Smith (R-NE) released the following statements after a joint roundtable with South Korea’s Minister for Trade Yeo Han-koo and Members of the Korean National Assembly, including Chairman Lee of the Trade, Industry, Energy, SMEs, and Startups Committee, celebrating the 10-year anniversary of the U.S.-Korea Free Trade Agreement (KORUS). The agreement was first negotiated under President George W. Bush, entered in to force under President Obama in 2012, and was updated by President Trump in 2018.
Rep. Brady said:
“Ten years later, American farmers, consumers, workers, and manufacturers are still benefiting from our strong trade and investment relationship with Korea, one of our closest allies and trading partners.
“This agreement created opportunities to sell Made-in-America goods and services in Korea that simply would not have existed outside of a comprehensive, high-standard trade agreement, and this helped increase our competitiveness in the Asia-Pacific region generally.
“I am grateful Minister Yeo spent time with the Ways and Means Committee to celebrate this anniversary, which serves as a reminder of the need to continue pursuing new free trade agreements that help us sell American all over the world.”
Rep. Smith said:
“The success story of the US-Korea Free Trade Agreement is a great example of how valuable comprehensive trade agreements are.
“Over the past ten years, American producers and consumers – particularly in the agriculture sector – have reaped the benefits of this trade agreement and the market access it provides to Korea and indirectly, the Indo-Pacific region.
“I am grateful Minister Yeo took the time to celebrate this anniversary with us and hope we can build off the successes of KORUS to further deepen our trade ties.”
BACKGROUND: KORUS took effect in March 2012, and was updated in March 2018 to address implementation issues with the agreement.