FIT's ITM: Educating Global Leaders

Department of International Trade and Marketing (ITM)


ITM News  -  Summer 2007



UPDATE ON OUTLOOK FOR PENDING FTAs                    Posted: June  25, 2007      


Following is an update on the outlook for the free trade agreements the U.S. has negotiated with Peru, Colombia, Panama and South Korea. With the pending June 30 expiration of trade promotion authority, these could be the last bilateral FTAs the U.S. negotiates for some time.

Peru. The U.S.-Peru FTA was signed in April 2006 and implementing legislation was approved by the Peruvian legislature earlier this year. Changes to the text of the FTA to reflect the May 10 trade policy agreement between Republicans and Democrats in the U.S. have now been finalized and it is expected that the Peruvian legislature will adopt these changes as an amendment to its implementing bill this week. In the U.S., the Bush administration is expected to make a strong push for congressional approval of the Peru FTA before the August recess.

In the meantime, the Andean Trade Preferences Act, which allows duty-free entry into the U.S. for thousands of goods from Peru, Colombia, Bolivia and Ecuador, is slated to expire June 30. House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Charles Rangel, D-N.Y., has expressed interest in a straight two-year extension of the ATPA, but Senate Finance Committee Ranking Member Charles Grassley, R-Iowa, continues to resist an extension of the program, which he claims could ease pressure for congressional action to approve the FTAs with Peru and Colombia. There is speculation that a compromise one-year extension could be brought directly to the floor and approved before June 30, but it remains to be seen whether this will happen.

Colombia. The U.S.-Colombia FTA was signed in November 2006 and approved earlier this month by Colombian lawmakers. No implementing legislation has yet been introduced in the U.S. Congress because of concern among some lawmakers about the history of violence against union leaders and members in Colombia. Discussions on how best to address these concerns are continuing, and if a resolution is reached legislation could be introduced and approved later this year. The White House and congressional Republicans are increasingly prioritizing this FTA given its geopolitical ramifications, but thus far Democrats are extremely resistant to making any commitments on timing due to intense opposition from U.S. labor unions. Colombia is expected to accept changes based on the May 10 trade policy agreement and has said it is also willing to take additional steps to facilitate passage of the FTA by the U.S. Congress.

Panama. The U.S.-Panama FTA will be signed June 28 following amendments to the text to reflect the trade policy agreement. It is widely believed that the Panama FTA will be the second to see action in the U.S. Congress, after Peru and before Colombia, as there are no major technical or policy concerns that threaten to delay it. However, some Republicans worry that considering the Panama FTA before the Colombia FTA could kill any chances that the latter will be approved this year. Legislation to implement the Panama agreement could be introduced later this summer and approved in the fall.

South Korea. The U.S.-Korea FTA is expected to be signed June 30, the last day on which an FTA can be signed in order to be considered under TPA procedures. However, the two sides are continuing to negotiate on how to incorporate various elements of the trade policy agreement. In any case, given congressional concerns on issues like agriculture, automobiles and North Korea, implementing legislation is not likely to be introduced until 2008.          
                         Source: World Trade/INTERACTIVE





We are pleased to announce that the Scholarship Selection Committee, comprised of Michael Curcio, Vice President of Human Resource at Warnaco, David Uricoli, Senior Director of Global Human Rights Compliance at Polo Ralph Lauren and ITM Advisory Board member, and Jade Huang, Assistant Director of Web Communications at Columbia University and ITM alumna, has chosen Bridget Connolly and Jae Young (Jenny) Park as the recipients of the 2007-08 The Warnaco Inc. Group Scholarships.

Bridget is a highly accomplished and promising ITM major, having placed second in the Cotton Incorporated scholarship competition, studied the Brazilian cotton market while at the ITM practicum last January, organized the most recent ITM Senior and Alumni Recognition Day celebration, and interned at Smith Barney International Focus Office in California as well as Vivre in New York. She will be interning at the U.S. Embassy in Paris, France this summer and plans to take the LSAT exam later this year to get into law school.

Bridget has had an extensive history of community service, having volunteered for U.N.I.C.E.F. and Habitat for Humanity primarily working on painting and food preparation projects. She was invited to represent the students to the Carl D. Perkins Grant Advisory Board, which makes it possible for the Department of FIT-ABLE to provide services to students with learning disabilities. She is currently the President of ITM’s International Trade Students Association.

Jenny has an impressive experience in the international fashion industry, currently working as a USA correspondent of the W Korea Magazine and as an intern at Bulgari Corporation of America. She started her fashion-related career in the Events Planning and Management group of Model Line Entertainment, Incorporated in South Korea.

Jenny has also been involved in leadership roles such as the direction of the Christmas Fashion Show, a charitable benefit for the Philippines Rural Education Program and designed the school uniform of International School in Manila, Philippines. Together with her family, Jenny is involved in many charities, periodically visiting orphanages and nursing homes. She also volunteered to assist in the success of the ITM scholarship breakfast and the USA-ITA conference.

In their selection as the scholarship recipients, Bridget and Jenny were recognized by the Selection Committee primarily for the quality of their oral and written presentations as well as their potential contribution to the global fashion industry. In their application for The Warnaco Inc. Group Scholarships, Bridget indicated her goal of becoming a general counsel for a fashion forward international fashion company and Jenny expressed her desire to inspire students and professionals with her eventual expertise in international marketing.

The judges thought that all of the applicants were outstanding and were especially impressive in demonstrating their deep knowledge of the donor.

We hope that you will all join us in congratulating Bridget and Jenny for their spectacular achievement.

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