|FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:||CONTACT: CHRISTI HARLAN|
|Tuesday, November 2, 1999||202-224-0894|
Sen. Phil Gramm, chairman of the Senate Committee on Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs, made the following statement prior to the testimony of U.S. Trade Representative Charlene Barshefsky at the committee's hearing on the World Trade Organization:
"Of all the members of the administration, I think you have done more to promote trade, prosperity and job growth than anybody. I think this has been a difficult administration to be trade representative in. You've been torn by many different forces. I think you have done an outstanding job in standing up for economic growth and job creation for prosperity and the future.
"I had to laugh when I was reading an article about the new head of the World Trade Organization, who showed up in Seattle and every kook group and lunatic fringe in America and the world was there to protest the one activity that consistently creates the goose that laid the golden egg, and that's trade.
"One of my great frustrations is that everybody benefits from trade but nobody knows it. Of all the issues I've dealt with in public life, it is the most important and the most difficult and hard for people to understand.
"I think it is very important that we continue forward with our GATS negotiations, that we move into services, which is an area where we have comparative advantage.
"I know that you're under a lot of pressure in areas related to labor and the environment. What a terrible hoax it is when opponents of trade are claiming that somehow workers benefit from holding back trade and that the growth of trade somehow creates child labor and poor working conditions.
"I would argue that trade creates development and prosperity and that ends child labor and basically creates more workers' rights because of increased demand for labor."