Washington, D.C., (April 16, 2015) — The American Council of Life Insurers (ACLI) applauds the bipartisan introduction of the “Bipartisan Congressional Trade Priorities and Accountability Act of 2015” by Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah), Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) and Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.).
The bill reauthorizes trade promotion authority (TPA), formally ensuring additional congressional input and oversight while empowering the executive branch to negotiate and conclude strong trade agreements that are in the United States’ best interests.
TPA is critical to a dedicated and effective trade agenda. Passage of this legislation will formally establish updated congressional negotiating objectives, reflecting 21st-century global commercial opportunities and challenges that our industry sees daily.
It is a necessary step for finalization and the ultimate enactment of vital trade agreements such as the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), the Trade in Services Agreement (TISA) and the Trans-Atlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP), all of which potentially offer our industry increased market access, sustainable growth and greater commercial predictability abroad and at home.
To continue leading in the international marketplace, the United States must be successful at the negotiating table. Since President Franklin D. Roosevelt in the 1930s, every president through 2007 has had some degree of authority from Congress to negotiate trade agreements that open new markets for American companies and workers and help ensure a rules-based system for two-way trade.
International trade currently supports more than one in five American jobs. Expanding U.S. economic ties with nations around the world is essential to selling more American products and services in the global marketplace. Passing TPA will help the overall insurance industry surpass its goal of contributing $200 billion dollars to U.S. exports by the end of the decade.
The life insurance industry is not only a provider of financial security and retirement to individuals and business but also one of the world’s largest institutional investors. A strong global marketplace with clear, transparent and dependable trade rules is critical to the health of our industry and to economic development.
We look forward to congressional passage of TPA. It is well past time. ACLI believes that such efforts will result in an open, strong and sustainable global marketplace.
The American Council of Life Insurers (ACLI) is a Washington, D.C.-based trade association with approximately 300 member companies operating in the United States and abroad. ACLI advocates in federal, state, and international forums for public policy that supports the industry marketplace and the 75 million American families that rely on life insurers’ products for financial and retirement security. ACLI members offer life insurance, annuities, retirement plans, long-term care and disability income insurance, and reinsurance, representing more than 90 percent of industry assets and premiums. Learn more at www.acli.com.