Personal Care Products Council Commends President Obama’s Push to Advance Foreign Trade — Cosmetics and Personal Care Products Industry Supports Efforts to Eliminate Barriers

In his speech to Congress, President Obama underscored his intent to seek trade promotion authority (TPA) in order to aggressively reduce trade barriers for American businesses. With TPA authority, the President can broker new and balanced trade deals targeted towards aligning U.S. and international commerce.

“21st century businesses, including small businesses, need to sell more American products overseas,” said the President during his State of the Union address. “Ninety-five percent of the world’s customers live outside our borders, and we can’t close ourselves off from those opportunities.”

According to data provided by the United Nations, U.S. exports of cosmetics and personal care products exceeded $11 billion in 2013.

“American cosmetics and personal care products companies represent a dynamic sector of our economy and are poised to expand their global reach to meet demand for their products around the world,” said Lezlee Westine, Council president and chief executive officer.  “Free trade agreements such as the TransPacific Partnership and the TransAtlantic Trade & Investment Partnership will lower trade and regulatory barriers and increase export opportunities for our industry. This will translate into greater innovation, job growth and economic benefits for our workers throughout the United States,” said Westine.

According to the most recent figures from Price Waterhouse Coopers, the personal care products industry employs nearly 8.2 million Americans (including direct sellers and beauty and nail salons), generates $109 billion in labor income, $188 billion in contributions to the nation’s GDP and $50 billion in paid taxes.

Westine reaffirmed the Council’s support for a bipartisan approach that advances the President’s goal and promotes beneficial trade policies for the personal care industry.

“We are excited by the potential of free trade agreements that would expand foreign markets for our products,” Westine said. “Our industry is looking forward to joining other businesses in actively supporting the President’s pro-trade agenda.”