Proclamation 5160 -- World Trade Week, 1984

March 15, 1984

By the President of the United States

of America

A Proclamation

America can be proud of its record in international trade. From the earliest days of the Republic, the Yankee trader was a familiar figure in all the great cities of the world. Merchants of every nation knew and respected these traders for the energy and resourcefulness that have always been so characteristic of the American people. By the middle of the nineteenth century, clipper ships from the United States had become the graceful symbols of our national determination to be first and best.

In each decade of our history, we have matched our trading strength with that of the strongest nations in the world. We have opened new markets, created new industries, and pioneered new technologies. In a competitive environment, we have succeeded and flourished. We have built the prosperity of this country on our confidence and on our own strength, ingenuity, and creativity.

Today, the United States is the greatest trading nation on Earth. We are the world's largest economy, its biggest market, and its leading exporter. American brand-names are household words in every market, and everywhere the words ``Made in U.S.A.'' are accepted as an assurance of the highest quality and service.

The strength of our exports has meant a great deal to America. To industry, it has meant profits and added opportunities for growth. To labor, exports have meant jobs -- more than five million in 1983. To the American consumer, free and fair trade has meant better products in greater variety and at lower prices.

There is no question that world trade is fiercely competitive nowadays. Few industries are unaffected by the pressure of foreign goods and services, whether competing for sales at home or abroad. This is a continuing challenge for us. Some would have the United States look to protectionist measures for the answer to competition. As we learned in the 1930's, protectionism in one country only provokes retaliation and invites protectionism in others. International tension grows, the flow of trade is diminished, and the world economy contracts.

Free and fair trade benefits all nations. For this reason, the United States is committed to policies promoting unrestricted trade and investment consistent with our security interests. Internationally, we are working with our trading partners for new negotiations in support of freer world trade, greater competition, and more open markets. At home we have urged American business to challenge foreign competition with aggressive selling, research and development, improved management systems, and innovations. Above all, we must build on the surest foundation for this country's prosperity -- our confidence in our own strength and abilities.

Now, Therefore, I, Ronald Reagan, President of the United States of America, do hereby proclaim the week beginning May 20, 1984, as World Trade Week, and I invite the people of the United States to join in ceremonies affirming the importance of trade to America and recognizing the need for increased export efforts.

In Witness Whereof, I have hereunto set my hand this 15th day of March, in the year of our Lord nineteen hundred and eighty-four, and of the Independence of the United States of America, the two hundred and eighth.

Ronald Reagan

[Filed with the Office of the Federal Register, 4:55 p.m., March 15, 1984]