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Port Of LA Opens To South Korea, Panama, Columbia In Trade Pacts

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US Trade Representative Ron Kirk (credit: PAUL J. RICHARDS/AFP/Getty Images)

US Trade Representative Ron Kirk (credit: PAUL J. RICHARDS/AFP/Getty Images)

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LOS ANGELES (CBS) — The nation’s top trade representative met with local lawmakers and business leaders Tuesday to announce new trade deals that could bring more revenue to the Port of Los Angeles.

KNX 1070′s Ron Kilgore reports U.S. Ambassador Ron Kirk toured the port while touting the benefits of trade agreements with South Korea, Panama and Colombia.


Kirk said that the President Barack Obama’s plan to double exports relies heavily on getting more small businesses more involved.

“If we’re really trying to create jobs, you want to do it where most Americans work, and most Americans still are employed by a company that’s fewer than 200 people,” said Kirk.

Kirk, who pointed to education, export finance, export marketing to help small businesses become more competitive, said there has been tremendous advances made locally, but that more work still needed to be done.

“We’ve started out by focusing on those small businesses who already export because they’re not intimidated, but then we’re doing everything we can to make it easier for those who aren’t,” said Kirk.

Small businesses account for 97 percent of all exports but make up just one-third of the estimated $1.7 trillion market value, he added.

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