Business Roundtable Supports Ambitious U.S. Trade and Economic Agenda Across the Indo-Pacific

November 12, 2021

Washington – Business Roundtable released the statements below following President Biden’s meeting today with APEC leaders and as Cabinet officials head to Asia for meetings with key trade partners:

“U.S. global competitiveness depends on strengthening our economic ties across the Indo-Pacific,” said Business Roundtable Trade and International Committee Chair Lance Fritz, Chairman, President and CEO of Union Pacific. “Business Roundtable CEOs urge the Administration to pursue a comprehensive trade and economic agenda with partners and allies in the region, beginning with expanding economic engagement and resolving existing trade disputes.”

“Across the Indo-Pacific, the United States has free trade agreement partners and allies who want to work together to strengthen our economies and preserve a rules-based global trading system. Now is the time to demonstrate U.S. leadership by pursuing a significant economic and trade agenda with this large and growing region,” said Business Roundtable President & CEO Joshua Bolten.

Deepening the U.S.-Indo-Pacific economic partnership will expand the substantial benefits of trade to more American businesses, farmers, workers and families.  Business Roundtable urges the Administration to work with partners and allies in the region to develop a negotiating structure, a defined agenda and specific objectives. U.S. business leaders support negotiating, joining and updating trade agreements and commitments to advance these efforts and support the United States hosting APEC in 2023. 

Highlights from the Indo-Pacific region:

  • Over 13 million American jobs depended on trade with the region pre-pandemic.
  • Collectively, the Indo-Pacific region accounts for over one-third of global purchasing power and nearly half of the global population.
  • In 2019, the region accounted for over 50% of global GDP growth.