The White House description of the auto measures in today's agreement is here: Increasing U.S. Auto Exports and Growing U.S. Auto Jobs Through the U.S.-Korea Trade Agreement.
This fact sheet only lists auto measures - additional measures are described by Mark Drajem for Bloomberg: South Korea, U.S. Rework Trade Accord to Appease Ford on Tariff Timetable. Additional measures described in this story by Cathy Rose A. Garcia for the Korea Times: Korea, US agree on delay on car tariffs. This story, by Choi He-suk in the Korea Herald, mentions a U.S. concession on medical issues: Korea defends car concession. This story, by Jung Seung-hyun for JoongAng Daily, provides a tad more detail on the medicines: A ‘win-win’ compromise breaks FTA deadlock
Here's a list of supporters: Statements of Support for the U.S-Korea Trade Agreement. After today, these supporters include:
- the current Ways and Means Chair (and Democrat from Michigan) Sander Levin
- the ranking Republican and incoming Ways and Means Chair (and Republican from Michigan) David Camp
- the Ford Motor Company. The White House posted an additional list of supporters on Saturday (Additional Statements of Support for the U.S.-Korea Trade Agreement) which included a statement of support by the The American Automotive Policy Council on behalf of its members including including Crysler and GM.
Today's agreement, described as the "2010 Supplemental Agreement," includes:
- Special accomodation in Korean safety and environmental regulation for auto imports from the U.S.
- Delays in reductions of U.S. tariffs on Korean cars and trucks. The U.S. tariff on cars with smaller engines was supposed end right away, the tariff on cars with larger engines was to be phased out over three years. Now tariffs remain at 2.5% for five years.
- Korea was going to cut its car tariff from 8% to zero right away. Now it cuts to 4% right away, and to zero in five years.
- The U.S. tariff on trucks - a remarkable 25%! - was going to be cut to zero gradually over 10 years. Now it stays at 25% for eight years, and then is cut to zero over the next two years.
- Accelerated reductions in tariffs on electric cars for both countries
- Provisions to make Korean taxation and regulatory decisions clearer to Americans. These give U.S. auto companies more time between the publication and effective date of Korean regulations, and require a review system to ensure Korean regulations accomplish their goals by the least burdensome means available.
- "Safeguard" measures allow a suspension of FTA concessions if import increases (a "surge") cause serious injury to domestic industry. The agreement creates special safeguard provisions for imports of cars into the U.S. From the fact sheet:
- In the 2007 agreement, the general safeguard protections against harmful product surges ended in the agreement’s tenth year. Under the 2010 supplemental agreement, the special auto safeguard is available for 10 years beyond the full elimination of tariffs for each Korean auto product. Under this motor vehicle safeguard, the U.S. government is not required to offer Korea tariff reductions or other compensation – generally required when a safeguard is applied – for up to two years after this particular safeguard is applied. The special motor vehicle safeguard can be applied more than once per particular auto product if more than one surge causes serious damage to U.S. production of that product. The higher tariffs of the special motor vehicle safeguard can be applied to a particular product for as long as four years, instead of three years as in the agreement’s general safeguard. There is no requirement for the U.S. to progressively re-lower tariffs while the special motor vehicle safeguard is applied. Fewer procedural steps are required to speed up the application of the safeguard when workers need faster relief.
- The original agreement had a dispute settlement procedure that could lead to a reimposition of U.S. tariffs if the Koreans were found to engage in unfair trade practices ("snapback"). Today's modification increases the range of Korean activities that may be subject to snapback.
Drajem points to U.S. concessions on Korean pork tariffs:
In exchange the U.S. agreed to higher tariffs on its pork products for a longer time period, a change that U.S. pork producers said they would accept.
“To get a final agreement, we needed to give a little, we needed to take one for the team,” Sam Carney, president of the National Pork Producers Council, said in a statement. “This is still a good deal for us.”
No concessions on beef, however.
Rose-Garcia adds details on the pork concession and explains that there was also a U.S. concession on visas:
In exchange for these concessions, Korea will be allowed to extend tariffs on American pork by two years to 2015. Korean workers, who are assigned to U.S. offices, will be allowed to have a five-year visa rather than the current three-year one.
Choi He-suk says:
In return, Korea made some gains in rules on pork, medicine and work visas. It also made no concession on beef imports.
Jung Seung-hyun says,
...the sale of Korean generic medicine in the U,S, will not be subject to patent or other disputes for three years instead of 18 months.
This post has been updated as new stories provide new details.