Saturday, August 26, 2006

Trade: US and 10 Southeast Asian nations sign trade and investment agreement

The United States and 10 Southeast Asian nations signed a trade and investment agreement on Friday that opens the door to possible free-trade talks.

US trade representative Susan Schwab signed the trade and investment framework agreement in Malaysia with the 10 member states of the Association of South East Asian Nations (Asean).

"The can-do spirit of the members of Asean reflects the can-do spirit we are so proud of in the United States," Schwab told reporters after signing the pact. "The Tifa with Asean represents an important step forward in the trade relationship with the region."