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The U.S.-Korea Free Trade Agreement: Will It Happen? Will It Matter?

In June 2007, after ten months of negotiation and effort, the United States and Korea signed the pathbreaking U.S.-Korea Free Trade Agreement (KorUS FTA), which would extend to South Korea the benefits of FTA status that 20 other countries now enjoy in bilateral trade with the U.S.

The KorUS FTA is, in our view, the most commercially significant bilateral free trade agreement the United States has concluded in the 15 years since the adoption of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). But prospects for ratification of the KorUS FTA are diminishing on the U.S. side as debate over the U.S. approach toward trade agreements moves to the center of the 2008 Presidential election cycle.


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