Senators Max Baucus (D-MT), chairman of the Senate Finance Committee, and Orrin Hatch (R-UT), ranking member of the committee, along with Congressman Dave Camp (R-MI), chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee, introduced legislation that would renew trade promotion authority (TPA).  The “Bipartisan Congressional Trade Priorities Act of 2014” establishes Congressional negotiating objectives and rules for the administration to follow when engaged in trade talks.  This includes “strict” requirements for consultations and access to information for Congress. 

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According to the cosponsors of the legislation, the bill addresses “competition from state-owned enterprises; localization barriers to trade; and restrictions on cross-border data flows.  TPA-2014 updates labor and environment provisions to reflect recent trade agreements, as well as market access priorities for goods and services.  It strengthens oversight by Congress and the public by adding consultation and reporting requirements. TPA-2014 also provides for tougher, enforceable rules against barriers to U.S.  agriculture.  And for the first time, TPA-2014 sets out a clear directive on currency manipulation.” 

Senator Hatch said, “Every President since FDR has sought trade promotion authority from Congress because of the job-creating benefits of trade.  Renewing TPA will help advance a robust trade agenda that will help American businesses, workers, farmers and ranchers by giving them greater access to overseas markets.”  

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