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US Free Trade Agreements. The United States is party to many bi-lateral and multi-lateral trade agreements. Countries with which the U.S. has active bi-lateral trade agreements include: Australia, Bahrain, Chile, Israel, Jordan, Morocco, Peru, Oman, and Singapore. The active multi-lateral trade agreements that the U.S. has signed include the North American Free-Trade Agreement and the Central America-Dominican Republic Free Trade Agreement (CAFTA-DR). The U.S. is also party to the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT, overseen by the WTO) along with 152 other countries. U.S. trade agreements with Panama, Korea, and Columbia are pending congressional approval. The U.S. is also in negotiations on trade agreements with Malaysia, Thailand, the United Arab Emirates, and the Southern African Customs Union (SACU) which includes Botswana, Lesotho, Namibia, South Africa, and Swaziland.

World Trade Organizations (WTO). The World Trade Organization (WTO) is the only global international organization dealing with the rules of trade between nations. At its heart are the WTO agreements, negotiated and signed by the bulk of the world’s trading nations and ratified in their parliaments. The goal is to help producers of goods and services, exporters, and importers conduct their business.

The CATO Institute. The mission of the Cato Institute is to increase the understanding of public policies based on the principles of limited government, free markets, individual liberty, and peace. The Institute will use the most effective means to originate, advocate, promote, and disseminate applicable policy proposals that create free, open, and civil societies in the United States and throughout the world. The Jeffersonian philosophy that animates Cato’s work has increasingly come to be called “libertarianism” or “market liberalism.” It combines an appreciation for entrepreneurship, the market process, and lower taxes with strict respect for civil liberties and skepticism about the benefits of both the welfare state and foreign military adventurism.

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