Budget cuts hurt trade policy, official says

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Associated Press

Posted on March 19, 2013 at 10:02 AM

WASHINGTON (AP) — The administration's top trade official says budget cuts are making it more difficult to negotiate new trade deals and enforce existing ones.

Demetrios Marantis, the acting U.S. Trade Representative, told the Senate Finance Committee that automatic cuts that went into effect at the beginning of the month and other anticipated cuts reduce his agency's capacity to enforce trade agreements and undermine its ability to conduct three major trade negotiations.

Marantis informed the committee about his office's goal to wrap up free trade talks this year with 10 other Pacific nations, launch trade talks with the European Union and begin negotiations on an International Services Agreement to open up global trade in services.

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