OIA Sends Industry Requests for Trans Pacific Partnership to U.S. Trade Ambassador

February 29, 2012

Outdoor Industry Association® (OIA) sent a comprehensive statement to the U.S. Trade Representative last Friday, detailing the position of the outdoor industry on the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP), a massive trade agreement among nearly a dozen Pacific Rim countries, including Vietnam, Singapore and Australia.

OIA developed the submission during the last six months in close consultation with outdoor industry companies who import products from a TPP partner country and companies that make products in the U.S. for export to a TPP country. OIA staff analyzed nearly 1,000 individual tariff codes to determine how individual outdoor products should be treated in the TPP. The submission recommends that the majority of products should be given duty-free access and governed under minimum administrative burden, but detailed the outdoor products that are manufactured in the United States and requested maximum protection for them.

“The final TPP paper we sent to Ambassador Kirk and his negotiators reflects a thorough six-month process,” said OIA Director of Trade Policy Alex Boian. “We believe our submission reflects the diversity — both of importers and domestic manufacturers — of OIA’s membership and the overall outdoor industry.”

The next round of TPP negotiations begins later this week in Melbourne, Australia, and will likely include discussion of how to treat apparel under the agreement. President Obama has indicated that completing the TPP by the end of this year is one of his top trade priorities. OIA will continue to represent the outdoor industry’s interests as the administration negotiates the TPP.