Latin America. In context.
Initiated in 2004 under the George Bush administration, the United States-Colombia Trade Promotion Agreement (CTPA) was signed into law in October 12, 2011 under pressure largely from conservative politicians in the US government. US Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL), in particular has condemned the pace with which the Obama administration moved forward with the agreement, and suggested that US trade with Colombia has fallen behind, as China took advantage of a slow moving political process in the US.
According to the Office of the United States Trade Representative (USTR), the deal is significant as the Colombian economy is the third largest in Central and South America.
On October 12th 2011, after nearly 5 years of partisan politics, the deal was signed into law, and “will expand exports of U.S. goods alone by more than $1.1 billion” and “will remove significant barriers to U.S. goods from entering Colombia’s market” according to the USTR.