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Today, President Obama stopped by a meeting of his Export Council, a group of business executives and government leaders who advise him on trade and export issues.
“The good news is we are well on our way to meeting a very ambitious goal that we set several years ago to double U.S. exports,” President Obama said. “The question now becomes how do we sustain this momentum?”
Part of that means building on progress that put strong trade deals in place, including the Trans-Pacific Partnership, which “sets a high bar that ensures that trade is fair and free,” the President said.
“And for those of us who abide by high labor standards and high environmental standards, obviously being able to lock in those kinds of high standards in the fastest-growing region of the world and the most populous region of the world can yield enormous benefits and help to generate billions of dollars in trade and millions of jobs.”
President Obama also discussed expanding trade with Europe through efforts to lock in the EU-U.S trade deal he announced in his State of the Union Address.
One of the things that we've also been trying to do during the course of this process is to make sure that it's not just the Xeroxes and the Dow Chemicals that are benefiting from this -- although we want our Fortune 100 companies to be selling as much as possible. They also have a whole lot of suppliers, so small businesses stand to benefit immensely from this process. We actually think that there’s room for small and medium-size businesses to export directly -- not just supplying large businesses, but also to break open and enter into these markets. And that can make a huge difference in terms of our long-term prospects.
So overall this is a good story; this is an optimistic story; but it’s one that we’re going to have to continue to sustain.