January 29, 2002
News Release 02-013
GLOBAL ISSUES AFFECTING U.S. INDUSTRIES
AND THE TECHNOLOGICAL COMPETITIVENESS OF THE UNITED STATES
ARE FOCUS OF ITC QUARTERLY PUBLICATION
NAFTA's effect on U.S. economic activity and the potential restructuring of the U.S. aluminum
industry are among the topics examined in the current issue of Industry Trade and Technology
Review (ITTR), a quarterly publication of the U.S. International Trade Commission's Office of
Industry Trade and Technology Review (ITTR) contains articles originating from research and
analysis conducted by International Trade Commission (ITC) staff as part of its responsibilities to
provide advice and technical information on industry and trade issues. The ITTR provides analysis
of important issues and insights into the global position of U.S. industries, the technological
competitiveness of the United States, and implications of trade and policy developments.
The ITTR is a publication of the Office of Industries. The opinions and conclusions it contains are
those of the authors and are not the views of the Commission or of any individual Commissioner.
The current issue (December 2001) includes the following articles:
- Evidence of Trade, Income, and Employment Effects of NAFTA -- U.S.-Mexico trade has tripled in
nominal terms since introduction of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) in
1994, but only part of this growth can be attributed directly to the actual provisions of the
agreement. NAFTA's effect on the U.S. gross domestic product has likely been small, but
positive. Trade policy in general, and NAFTA in particular, tends to shift jobs between
sectors rather than to create or destroy jobs in the aggregate. The impact on workers in some
sectors has been relatively greater than on those in others, but the experience of workers
displaced due to NAFTA has likely been similar to that of workers displaced for reasons
unrelated to trade. This article examines factors affecting the growth in U.S.-Mexico trade,
provides perspectives on NAFTA's income and employment effects on the U.S. economy,
and summarizes the principal findings of existing evidence regarding the influence of
NAFTA on U.S. economic activity.
- U.S. Primary Aluminum: Power Costs and Market Conditions Could Cause Long-term
Restructuring -- U.S. primary aluminum production declined sharply in the past year as
electric power costs rose substantially in the Pacific Northwest. Although power prices have
recently declined, regional production is unlikely to rebound in the near term, given
relatively low aluminum prices and declining downstream demand for fabricated aluminum
products. Reduced production may portend a longer-term contraction of the U.S. industry,
stemming from changes in the contractual agreements between Pacific Northwest aluminum
producers and their main electric power provider and rising production of foreign primary
aluminum and U.S. secondary aluminum. This article examines the current state of the
Pacific Northwest aluminum industry, market conditions affecting U.S. production, and the
outlook for the U.S. primary aluminum industry.
In addition, the publication includes an appendix charting key performance indicators for the steel,
automobile, aluminum, flat glass, and services industries.
Industry Trade and Technology Review (USITC Publication 3483, December 2001) will be posted
on the ITC's Internet server at http://www.usitc.gov. A cumulative list of articles published in the
report series is also posted. The ITTR will also be available at regional federal depository libraries in
the United States. To request a printed copy of the ITTR or to be added to the mailing list, contact
the Office of the Secretary, U.S. International Trade Commission, 500 E Street SW, Washington
DC 20436. Requests may also be faxed to 202-205-2104.
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