Over the past four years, we have renewed our trade relations and trade agreements at a historic pace. We have updated comprehensive trade agreements with Canada, Mexico and South Korea; entered into Phase One agreements with China and Japan that address many of the significant barriers to US exporters in these key markets; and making important progress in removing trade barriers faced by certain sectors in several other countries. Together, these countries buy nearly 50 percent of US exports today. This agreement facilitates increased opportunities and fairer treatment for American producers and consumers struggling during the pandemic, and it is an important platform for opening up additional opportunities for US exporters in the future. As a result of this agreement, exports increased 27 percent from their lowest level in May. While this agreement continues to bear fruit, it is important that we treat it as the first step on a long journey to a more open market and fair treatment of US goods and services, not an excuse to relax when there is still a lot of work to be done. .
While the President is empowered to administer US foreign policy and has been delegated authority to address some trade matters through executive action, our Constitution empowers Congress to write and pass trade policy. The first agenda of the Congress must re-enact the Generalized System of Preferences (GSP) and the Miscellaneous Tariff Bill (MTB) – two major programs that enhance our competitiveness. Both programs will end at the end of the year if there is no swift action by Congress. Updating these programs, which already enjoy bipartisan support, will reduce costs and uncertainty for American businesses as they continue to grapple with the effects of COVID.
The GSP benefits all Americans by encouraging economic growth in developing countries while providing the US with tools to promote good practices such as protecting intellectual property, providing fair market access to US exports, and treating US investors fairly. Letting the GSP slip would raise the average tariffs by 3.5 percent for small businesses in Nebraska while lowering our leverage to ensure developing countries raise standards and play fairly in global markets.
MTB allows the process to waive input tariffs for domestic manufactures that cannot be obtained domestically. This helps our manufacturers and promotes American competitiveness. According to the National Association of Manufacturers, a comprehensive MTB renewal by the end of this year could remove more than $ 1.5 billion in tariffs for products not made or available in the US. That is money that US producers can invest in their facilities and labor. .
We also know American business and agriculture depend on overseas markets to grow. President Trump understood that and made it a priority by negotiating and signing the United States-Mexico-Canada (USMCA) deal, and the Phase One deals with China and Japan. His administration has also made significant progress in comprehensive negotiations with Britain and Kenya, and has agreed small deals that tackle obstacles we face in other markets. As a result, all sectors of the US economy, including agriculture, are gaining access to markets that have been banned for years.
The significant progress we have made in the last four years must be the blueprint for future trade opportunities that benefit American businesses, agriculture and consumers. Going forward, we need to continue the extraordinary work that President Trump and his administration have done on trade. We have to take advantage of this momentum and leave nothing on the table. Through my position on the Ways and Means Committee, I will continue to seek new markets for Nebraska products and push to reduce the barriers our exporters face in overseas markets so US farmers, ranchers, producers and service providers can compete and win worldwide .