The U.S. business community founded the FTA American Business Coalition. The role of the coalition will be to work towards a bonus agreement and to ensure that the interests of the U.S. economy are well represented. It will also work to ensure that both parties to the negotiations focus on concluding the agreement in a timely manner and on adopting the agreement through the necessary government processes. The coalition will also be a major source of educational information on the agreement, the importance of U.S.-Thailand relations and the benefits of an agreement for U.S. industry, services and agriculture. „Build on Enterprise for ASEAN Initiative and U.S. -Singapore FTA: President Bush announced the U.S. Enterprise for ASEAN Initiative (EAI) in October, 2002. This initiative offers the prospect of bilateral free trade agreements between the United States and ASEAN countries, which are committed to economic reforms and openness. The IAA aims to create a network of bilateral free trade agreements that increase trade and investment and bring our economies and our future closer together.
Following the U.S.-Singapore Free Trade Agreement, a free trade agreement between the United States and Thailand will advance this ambitious initiative. Two-way trade between the United States and Singapore and Thailand is estimated to be close to $53 billion. „Promote U.S. Exports: The United States exported $4.9 billion to Thailand in 2002. A free trade agreement will help increase U.S. exports to Thailand. Although Thailand has liberalized its trade and investment regime in recent years, its average tariffs remain relatively high (approximately 16%). Through free trade negotiations, the United States will aim to eliminate these tariffs and significantly reduce Thailand`s significant non-tariff barriers, creating new and significant opportunities for U.S.
businesses. A free trade agreement would mainly benefit U.S. farmers, who currently face tariffs of 35% on average in Thailand, in addition to a number of non-tariff barriers. Other U.S. sectors that would likely benefit from a free trade agreement with Thailand include cars and spare parts as Thailand`s tariffs on these products can reach 80%.