09:09 GMT +312 December 2019
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    US president Barack Obama speaks during a press conference on December 1, 2015 at the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) in Paris

    Obama Cuts Tariffs on 54 Goods in Free Trade Agreement - White House

    © AFP 2019 / MARTIN BUREAU
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    US President Barack Obama ordered tariffs to be reduced on dozens of items in a free trade agreement endorsed in September by 21 economies of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) forum, the White House announced in a presidential proclamation.

    WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — On September 9, APEC leaders endorsed an agreement to reduce tariff rates to 5 percent or less by the end of this year on 54 environmental goods, according to the White House.

    “In order to reduce the applied tariff rates of the United States to the level agreed upon by APEC leaders, the HTS [US Harmonized Tariff Schedule] is modified as set forth in the annex to this proclamation,” Obama said the document on Wednesday.

    The tariff reductions take effect on December 31, according to the proclamation.

    The APEC agreement is separate from the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP), a more ambitious attempt by the United States and 11 other Pacific-Rim nations to integrate their economies. After 10 years of negotiations, that agreement was finalized in October and sent to the US Congress with a 90-day deadline to review its details.

    free trade agreement, Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), APEC, Barack Obama
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