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For Immediate Release
Office of the Press Secretary
May 21, 2003

Statement on United States-Bahrain Free Trade Agreement
Statement by the Press Secretary

The United States and Bahrain will seek to negotiate a Free Trade Agreement. A U.S.-Bahrain Free Trade Agreement would be a major step toward achieving the Middle East free trade area proposed by President Bush on May 9, 2003.

This free trade agreement offers a number of other benefits: it would be an important step in advancing our two countries' shared goals of peace and stability in the Middle East; it will mean enhanced commercial relations with a leading economic reformer in the Arab world; and it will help expand the circle of opportunity for people in the Middle East.

The intent to negotiate will proceed in accordance with the Congressional consultations and notification procedures under the Trade Promotion Authority Act of 2002.

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