Discretionary Spending

Function 370 - Commerce and Housing Credit

Eliminate the International Trade Administration's Trade-Promotion Activities

CBO periodically issues a compendium of policy options (called Options for Reducing the Deficit) covering a broad range of issues, as well as separate reports that include options for changing federal tax and spending policies in particular areas. This option appears in one of those publications. The options are derived from many sources and reflect a range of possibilities. For each option, CBO presents an estimate of its effects on the budget but makes no recommendations. Inclusion or exclusion of any particular option does not imply an endorsement or rejection by CBO.

The International Trade Administration (ITA) supports U.S. businesses that sell their goods and services abroad. Part of ITA's work is promoting trade by assisting domestic companies that are either new to the exporting process or trying to increase their exports. To do that, ITA assesses the companies' competitiveness in foreign markets and develops trade and investment policies to promote the companies' exports. This option would eliminate those trade-promotion activities. CBO estimates that eliminating them would save $3.0 billion through 2028, provided that federal appropriations were reduced accordingly. Uncertainty about this option's savings stems primarily from uncertainty about baseline projections of the activities' costs, against which those savings are measured. Furthermore, if ITA's priorities shifted between trade promotion and other activities, the expected savings would change as well.