During a time when the economy is struggling, opening the gateway for Hoosier goods and services to be sold into foreign markets is a necessity. 95 percent of the world’s consumers live outside of the United States. We need to pursue policies that help ship Hoosier products overseas, not Hoosier jobs. The economy of Indiana benefits in many ways when free trade agreements (FTAs) are completed with foreign countries. Hoosier businesses and the agriculture industry in the 8th Congressional District exported more than $2.6 billion in merchandise with only $1.2 billion going to FTA partners during 2010. In addition, more than 6,000 jobs are directly supported by exports.
When implemented fairly, FTAs strengthen the economy and I support FTAs that ease tariffs for Hoosier consumers and allow for profitability of Hoosier exports. Since my time in Congress, I have supported FTAs with Korea, Panama and Colombia. These free trade agreements are allowing products like the Toyota Sienna and Highlander, made in Princeton, IN, to be sold across the world.