Ambassador Ron Kirk today announced he plans to step down from the role of U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) after nearly four years of service. He plans to depart from the position in late February.
"It has been no less than my greatest professional privilege to serve President Barack Obama alongside the dedicated professionals of USTR," said Ambassador Kirk. "Together, we have made great strides to bring about the President’s vision of a more robust, responsible, and responsive trade policy that opens markets to products stamped ‘Made-in-America’ and enforces Americans’ trade rights around the world – and does so in a way that is more consistent with America’s core values on issues like the rights of workers and the environment.
"In President Obama’s first term, trade has been a major part of this Administration’s efforts to support American jobs right here at home. I am proud of USTR’s contribution to America’s ongoing economic recovery."
Some of the highlights of the past four years at USTR include:
- The completion, passage through Congress, and implementation of long-pending trade agreements with Korea, Colombia and Panama; the launching and significant advancement of the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade negotiations.
- The revitalization of American trade enforcement and the standing up of the Interagency Trade Enforcement Center (ITEC).
- The U.S.-led "turning of the page" at the World Trade Organization to revitalize Members’ work in Geneva, including the exploration of a new International Services Agreement and negotiations toward expansion of the Information Technology Agreement and an agreement on trade facilitation.
- The renewal and strengthening of Trade Adjustment Assistance.
- The termination of the Jackson-Vanik amendment’s application to Russia and the full application of the WTO agreement between Russia and the United States.
- The renewal of the Generalized System of Preferences and the Andean Trade Preferences Act.
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