U.S. Chamber: Trade agreements will create more jobs

The protracted worldwide recession won't allow the U.S. to rely solely on domestic consumption to boost the economy, especially since many nations have put up protectionist barriers during the past couple of years, he said. 

More than 18 million jobs depend on the nation's free trade agreements, and 5.4 million of those were created by those agreements, according to a study released today by the Chamber. The study, "Opening Markets, Creating Jobs," examined the effects in 2008 of trade agreements with 14 countries. The U.S. has trade agreements with 17 countries but three were left out of the study because they had been recently completed.

"I defy anyone to name another budget-neutral government initiative that has generated anything like this number of jobs," Donohue said. 

He urged the Obama administration, business community and labor unions to work together and double U.S. exports within the next five years, then double them again by 2020. 

To see the list of countries that the U.S. has FTA's with, click here.