July 28,2005

Chairman Grassley applauds final vote in Senate on implementing legislation for CAFTA


TO: Reporters and Editors
RE: CAFTA, final passage
DA: July 28, 2005

Sen. Chuck Grassley, Chairman of the Committee on Finance, made the following comment on final Senate passage of the CAFTA implementing bill. The House of Representatives also passed the measure today.

“We’ve taken an important step to expand meaningful economic opportunities forAmerica’s farmers, ranchers, manufacturers and service providers. This fair trade agreementlevels the playing field for U.S. exporters in Iowa and nationwide. Because of this vote, ourexporters will get a better trade deal in the CAFTA countries than what they have today.

“We’ve also sent an important message about maintaining our leadership on opening upinternational trade. Passing CAFTA is important in its own right. But it’s also important forbuilding momentum in the ongoing Doha Round trade negotiations in the WTO. I hope theadministration takes advantage of our passing CAFTA to press for meaningful market accesscommitments from our trading partners in those negotiations.

“CAFTA will also help to strengthen young democracies in Central America. Thisagreement will improve transparency and enhance respect for the rule of law in those countries,in addition to bringing increased prosperity and greater economic opportunities. By helping tostabilize democratic governments in the region, CAFTA serves to advance our national securityinterests. I look forward to the President signing this important legislation into law as soon aspossible.”