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Promoting U.S. Growth, Employment, and Strengthening the Middle Class

U.S. participation in OECD trade bodies contributes to maintaining open global markets for U.S. goods and services.  The OECD serves a critical function in helping members advance their shared agenda of ensuring a strong and dynamic global trading system that can generate sustained economic growth and overcome the challenges of the global economic crisis.

The United States benefits through its participation in the OECD Trade Committee and its subsidiary bodies:

  • Working Party of the Trade Committee: Carries forward the work of the Trade Committee, between the latter’s sessions, looking in particular at the more technical aspects of trade issues such as cooperation on regulatory framework, income wage inequality, and global value chains, among other issues.
  • Joint Working Party on Agriculture and Trade: Monitors and tracks developments in agriculture and their impact on trade.
  • Joint Working Party on Trade and Environment: Examines issues such as transport, climate change, fuel subsidies, and trade in environmentally sensitive products.

OECD efforts advance our understanding of how trade openness can bolster economies in member countries as well as in the major emerging and other non-member countries, including through economic modelling that illustrates the effects of trade liberalization on GDP, growth and employment:

  • Services Trade Restrictiveness Index (STRI):  Launched in 2014, the STRI analyses how various barrier to trade in the services sector affect the economic growth of countries.  STRI analysis is improving our understanding of how barriers to trade in the services sector may negatively affect exports more than imports, hampering the competitiveness of domestic firms and how countries can deepen commitments made under the General Agreement on Trade in Services (GATS) by supporting the conclusion of the Trade in Services Agreement (TiSA) negotiations.  Drawing on best practices from around the world, TiSA will encompass state-of-the-art trade rules aimed at promoting fair and open trade across the full spectrum of service sectors – from telecommunications and technology to distribution and delivery services.  Expanding trade in services is a top U.S. priority as services account for 80 percent of U.S. jobs and 30 percent of U.S. exports.
  • Trade in Value-Added (TiVA):  The joint OECD – WTO TiVA database analyses the input that countries contributed in the production of goods and services by considering the value added by each country.  TiVA indicators are designed to better inform policy makers by providing new insights into the commercial relations between nations.
  • OECD-FAO Agricultural Outlook:  This annual publication on agricultural market trends and prospects for production, consumption, trade, stocks, and prices of key agricultural commodities – biofuels, cereals, dairy, fish, oilseeds, meat and sugar.
  • Restrictions on Exports of Raw Materials:   Launched in 2016, the Raw Materials database provides a dynamic view on how countries attempt to use export restrictions to regulate the supply and trade in these materials from 2009-2014.  The inventory covers export restricting measures placed on 66 metals and minerals and compares how countries use quotas, taxes or license requirements to limit exports as well as the trade distorting potential of each measure.  Export restrictions have contributed to episodes of global supply shortages and strong swings in prices.  They have also become a source of friction and open trade disputes between governments using them and affected trading partners.