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Diplomacy in Action

Colombia: A Key Partnership

Fact Sheet
Bureau of Western Hemisphere Affairs
June 2, 2011


"Latin America is a part of the world where the economy is growing very quickly. And as these markets grow, so does their demand for goods and services. So, the more we sell overseas the more jobs we create on our shores."
                                            --President Barack Obama

Now more than ever, America’s ability to create or support jobs here at home depends on our ability to export goods and services to the world. Today, exports support over 9 million American jobs. These are well-paying positions; Americans whose jobs depend on goods exports earn 13 to 18% more than the national average.

The U.S.-Colombia Trade Promotion Agreement
U.S. goods exports to Colombia in 2010 reached a record high of $12 billion, representing a 27% increase from 2009. A trade agreement with Colombia will increase U.S. goods exports to Colombia by an estimated $1.1 billion and U.S. GDP by an estimated $2.5 billion.

  • Colombia is the third largest market for U.S. exports in Latin America and the 20th largest market for U.S. goods.
  • The Colombian government plans to invest $42 billion over the next eight years in urgently needed infrastructure projects, such as roads and airports, presenting opportunities for U.S. exporters.
  • The U.S. sold more products to Colombia than to Russia, Spain, Turkey, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Chile, Peru, Indonesia, South Africa, Thailand, and the Philippines in 2010. Every U.S. state exports to Colombia.

Close Security Partner and Regional Leader
With strong bipartisan support, Colombia has made historic progress improving security for its citizens and stemming the flow of drugs into the United States. Colombia has also taken an active and prominent role in global and regional institutions, including the United Nations Security Council (UNSC). It chairs the UNSC Committee on Iran Sanctions and the Committee on Sudan Sanctions and contributes to multilateral peacekeeping efforts in Haiti, Sierra Leone, and the Sinai.

A Commitment to Human and Labor Rights
President Juan Manuel Santos has addressed many human and labor rights concerns, including the following:

  • Passing comprehensive reform laws to restore land rights and provide reparations to victims of violence. The land law is expected to help more than 400,000 families return to their land.
  • Creating a Ministry of Labor to give cabinet-level attention to labor inspection programs, gender equality, better salaries and working conditions.
  • Engaging human rights activists; increasing protections for human rights activists and labor leaders and condemning threats against them.
  • Passing health care reform, and increasing the minimum wage.

For additional information on how this trade agreement benefits your home state and American industries go to:

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