January 11, 2001
News Release 01-003
Inv. No. 332-425


The U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC) has launched a general factfinding investigation to analyze the economic impact of a free trade agreement between the United States and the Republic of Korea.

The investigation, U.S.-Korea FTA: The Economic Impact of Establishing a Free Trade Agreement (FTA) between the United States and the Republic of Korea (Inv. No. 332-425), was requested by the U.S. Senate's Committee on Finance in a letter received December 18, 2000.

In its request letter, the Committee said that the Korea report will be the first in a series of reports it expects to request over the next several months. The Committee noted that, in the absence of a new round of global trade liberalization talks within the World Trade Organization framework, it is interested in obtaining the Commission's advice on the economic impact of negotiating bilaterally or regionally with particular trading partners, as a number of U.S. trading partners have done.

As requested, in the Korea investigation, the ITC will:

The ITC will submit its report to the Committee on September 18, 2001.

The ITC will hold a public hearing in connection with this investigation on May 17, 2001, at 9:30 a.m. at the ITC Building, 500 E Street SW, Washington, DC. Requests to appear at the public hearing should be filed no later than 5:15 p.m. on April 27, 2001, with the Secretary, U.S. International Trade Commission, 500 E Street SW, Washington, DC 20436. For hearing-related information, contact the Office of the Secretary at 202-205-1806.

The ITC also welcomes written submissions for the record in this investigation. Written statements (one original and 14 copies) should be submitted at the earliest practical date but no later than 5:15 p.m. on May 25, 2001. All written submissions, except for confidential business information, will be available for public inspection. Written submissions should be addressed to the Secretary, United States International Trade Commission, 500 E Street SW, Washington, DC 20436.

Further information on the scope of this investigation and appropriate submissions is available in the ITC's notice of investigation, dated January 10, 2001, which may be obtained from the ITC Internet site (www.usitc.gov) or by contacting the Office of the Secretary at the above address or at 202-205-1806.

ITC general factfinding investigations, such as this one, cover matters related to tariffs or trade and are generally conducted at the request of the U.S. Trade Representative, the Senate Committee on Finance, or the House Committee on Ways and Means. The resulting reports convey the Commission's objective findings and independent analyses on the subjects investigated. The Commission makes no recommendations on policy or other matters in its general factfinding reports. Upon completion of each investigation, the ITC submits its findings and analyses to the requester. General factfinding investigation reports are subsequently released to the public, unless they are classified by the requester for national security reasons.

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