HINDI kasama ang bilateral free trade agreement (FTA) sa pagitan ng PIlipinas at gobyerno ng Estados Unidos sa negotiating table dahil mas nakatuon ang pansin ng administrasyong Biden sa Indo-Pacific Economic Framework (IPEF) initiative nito.
“In terms of a more ‘traditional’ FTA, we’re not currently negotiating any such agreements with trading partners in particular because we do not see that traditional [FTA] being appropriate for the types of challenges and opportunities that we’re facing right now,” ayon kay US Trade Representative Ambassador Katherine Tai sa isang panayam sa Makati City.
Si Tai, principal trade advisor ng administrasyong Biden ay nagpaliwanag na ang tradisyonal na FTA ay mas nakatuon para i-maximize ang liberalization, na aniya’y nag-create ng “vulnerabilities” sa supply chains.
“That’s an important reason why we’re not doing traditional FTA, because we feel like if you continue to do things the same way, then why would you expect to have different outcomes… The different outcomes we are looking for are to have supply chains that are more resilient —trade patterns that are more sustainable and more inclusive,” ani Tai.
“Our goals are not just to liberalize trade for the sake of liberalizing trade… The Indo-Pacific Economic Framework is designed exactly to do that… We’re not just trying to liberalize because that’s led to very fragile supply chains. We’re trying to figure out trade tools that we can use to serve the larger purpose of promoting resilience, sustainability, and inclusiveness,” dagdag na wika nito.
Ang IPEF na inilunsad noong May 2022 ay economic initiative ni US President Joe Biden kasama ang 13 trading partners ng Estados Unidos gaya ng Australia, Brunei Darussalam, Fiji India, Indonesia, Japan, the Republic of Korea, Malaysia, New Zealand, Pilipinas, Singapore, Thailand, at Vietnam.
Ang US ang itinuturing na “third largest trading partner” ng Pilipinas na may mahigit “$18.9 billion in goods and services exchanged in 2020,” ayon sa US State Department.
Ang mga pangunahing produkto na in-export mula sa Pilipinas tungo sa Estados Unidos ay ang semiconductor devices at computer peripherals, automobile parts, electric machinery, textiles at garments, wheat at animal feeds, coconut oil, at information technology/business process outsourcing services.
Samantala, ang mga pangunahing inaangkat naman mula sa US tungo sa Pilipinas ay agricultural goods, machinery, cereals, raw at semi-processed materials para sa manufacture ng semiconductors, electronics, at transport equipment. (CHRISTIAN DALE)31