It was ratified by the United States House of Representatives on 24 July 2003 by a vote of 272 to 155, and the United States Senate ratified the law by 66 votes to 32 on 31 July 2003. Then, on September 3, 2003, U.S. President George W. Bush signed the U.S. Free Trade Agreement Implementation Act, which officially came into effect on January 1, 2004.   On January 30, 2003, the White House informed Congress of its intention to conclude the free trade agreement. (1) In accordance with the procedures of the Trade Promotion Authority (TPA or Fast-Track), this notification was made more than 90 days before the signing of the Agreement on 6 May 2003. == The Trade Representative (USTR) has published the text of the agreement and the related side letters on his website. (2) Of the 31 Administrative Advisory Committees on Trade Policy, only the Advisory Committee on Works did not approve the Free Trade Agreement, although several of the Committee`s reports were neutral, did not contain a majority opinion, divided on certain provisions or having divergent opinions. (3) The agreement was supported by businesses and consumer organisations, but was criticised by workers and certain environmental interests. Some of the specific concerns raised relate to sanctions restrictions for intractable litigation over labor and environmental issues, the integrated sourcing initiative, potential capital controls, temporary visas, and access to U.S.
chewing gum exports. A fundamental political question with respect to the free trade agreement is whether the United States should pursue free trade and investment relations on a bilateral basis, instead of maintaining existing trade and investment practices on both sides or pursuing more liberal trade relations through other means. It is also a question of the extent to which the language of the FTA should serve as a model for other agreements. Negotiations on the free trade agreement between the United States and Singapore began during the Clinton administration in December 2000. The free trade agreement would be the fifth such agreement signed by the United States and the first with an Asian country. According to the U.S. Trade Representative, the free trade agreement has opened up new avenues in e-commerce, competition policy, and government procurement. . . .