A Good Trade Agreement Supports Jobs and Exports

A Good Trade Agreement Supports Jobs and Exports

09.07.12 | By Mark Grayson

With the start of the next round of negotiations for the Trans Pacific Partnership in Leesburg, Virginia many Americans probably do not know how important these talks are to U.S. jobs and exports. The biopharmaceutical sector directly employed more than 650,000 U.S. workers in 2009, supporting a total of 4 million jobs [in areas such as construction, trucking, and information technology.

Our companies lead the world in the pursuit of new, life-saving and life-enhancing medicines. Our sector's exports grew by more than 340 % from 1997 to 2011 to a figure of almost $48 billion -- the fourth-highest export figure among research and development-intensive industries. More importantly, these exports come from across the nation. Among the highest exporting states are California, Indiana, New York, Pennsylvania, Massachusetts, Delaware, Illinois, North Carolina and New Jersey.

In the midst of current economic hard times, these numbers and the potential of our industry for U.S. workers and the economy must not be ignored. The TPP negotiations currently underway will dictate the terms by which our companies compete in the global economy - let's hope U.S. negotiators work hard to protect U.S. jobs, exports, and the ability of our companies to continue to develop the groundbreaking medicines that are changing the face of health care around the world.

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