Bahrain–United States Free Trade Agreement

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The United States-Bahrain Free Trade Agreement (USBFTA) is a free trade agreement (FTA) between the United States and Bahrain, signed on September 14, 2004. It was ratified by the United States House of Representatives on December 7, 2005 by 327-95, with 10 not voting. The United States Senate approved the bill on December 13, 2005 by voice vote.[1] President of the United States, George W. Bush, signed the USBFTA Implementation Act into law on January 11, 2006.[2] The FTA was implemented on August 1, 2006 [3] and will reduce certain barriers of trade between the two countries.

Early stages of the Bahrain-US free trade negotiations go back to the year 1999, with the signing of a Bilateral Investment Treaty (BIT), which entered into force May 30, 2001. It is the first such treaty signed between the United States and a member of the GCC, and is aimed at stimulating the flow of private investment between the two countries. Both parties agreed that a stable framework for investment would maximize effective utilization of economic resources and improve living standards. One year later, a Trade and Investment Framework Agreement (TIFA) was signed on June 18, 2002, representing the prelude for the FTA negotiations. The TIFA was designed as a forum for an ongoing bilateral dialogue on economic reform and trade liberalization.