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(As prepared)

Good morning.  It’s a pleasure to be with you today.  As we all know, the services sectors are vital for domestic and international economic growth and employment.  We benefit from your perspectives as we prioritize public policy that promotes growth and prosperity.

I’d like to begin by telling you about our work on international economic issues at the State Department and share some examples of how we’re addressing critical priorities of the services sectors in our engagements.

The economic diplomacy of the department of state is a vital part of our foreign policy.

Our economic lines of effort cover all regions of the world.  As part of our enduring commitment to the Indo-Pacific region, including through the Indo-Pacific Economic Framework, the United States looks forward to hosting the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation, better known as APEC, in 2023.  Hosting APEC is an opportunity to showcase U.S. economic leadership and to highlight the relevance of international economic engagement.

Our APEC priorities will reflect many of the Biden Administration’s goals and align broadly with three drivers of growth identified by APEC leaders in 2020.  These are trade and investment; innovation and digitalization; and strong, balanced, secure, sustainable, and inclusive growth.

APEC economies need services industries to achieve this kind of growth.  That’s why we see our host year as an opportunity to continue progress in creating a favorable environment for services trade that underpins resilience and connectedness in the region.

President Biden recognizes that our prosperity remains connected to our hemispheric partners.  The president announced the Americas Partnership for Economic Prosperity, to take new approaches to promoting inclusive economic growth, fostering innovation, and addressing the climate crisis through increased public and private investment.

After president Biden’s Announcement at the Summit of the Americas, the United States has engaged in consultations with regional partners and stakeholders on several areas of focus:  reinvigorating regional economic institutions; making more resilient supply chains; creating clean energy jobs and advancing decarbonization and biodiversity; and ensuring sustainable and inclusive trade.  The private sector and services industry will be important stakeholders as our discussions move forward.

But our work on these issues extends way beyond Latin America. Our work with the European Union, including on restoring stability for transatlantic data flows and building new ties through the U.S.-EU Trade and Technology Council (or TTC), provides an opportunity to shape the economy of the future.  It is a high priority for me and a critical aspect of Secretary Blinken’s foreign policy agenda.

In addition to being a framework for policymakers to work together, the TTC is a forum for reaching out to a broad range of stakeholders.  This stakeholder engagement on digital policy issues is critical to inform and support our efforts to maximize benefits and address challenges in the digital economy.

TTC co-chairs are keen to see progress on aligning our approaches on artificial intelligence, creating an early warning system to address potential semiconductor supply chain disruptions, and joint work on promoting trusted telecom vendors in third countries.

Americas Partnership and TTC are just two examples.  Across the globe, my team is advancing U.S. economic goals and bolstering relationships with partners and allies.  In so many of these efforts, we can see clearly the critical role played by services industries domestically and abroad in achieving our broader goals.

I thank you for your time and cooperation, and for the chance to share our priorities, and wish you all great success.

U.S. Department of State

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