Thursday, February 17, 2011

Teamsters oppose South Korea "Son of NAFTA" deal

Jim Hoffa today said the Teamsters will oppose the South Korea trade deal that's expected to be sent to Congress soon.

The Teamsters join the AFL-CIO, Communications Workers of America, Unitd Steel Workers and the International Association of Machinists in opposing the agreement. South Korea is the 12th largest economy in the world, and the deal would be the largest since NAFTA.

Hoffa said he appreciated President Obama's efforts to renegotiate the deal. But after careful review and discussion, he concluded that the agreement fell short. He said
The United States has lost 5 million jobs since NAFTA, and the last thing America’s middle class needs right now is ‘Son of NAFTA.' We desperately need to reverse direction and protect our economy instead of giving it away to our diplomatic partners. One of the real dangers of this deal is that it gives South Korean multinationals new rights to challenge U.S. laws. Why should a foreign company or investor have more power in this country than our own small businesses?
 He said studies show the deal would cost 159,000 jobs in high-paying industries and increase the trade deficit. He added
This deal would allow so-called ‘Korean’ cars sold in the United States to be made mostly in other countries because of the ridiculously low rule-of-origin requirement. I also have serious security concerns because the deal would cover products assembled in South Korea made with parts from North Korea.
Read the whole thing here.