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Faryar Shirzad the Assistant Secretary for Import Admin

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PostPosted: Tue Jan 03, 2006 9:28 pm    Post subject: Faryar Shirzad the Assistant Secretary for Import Admin Reply with quote

Faryar Shirzad has been nominated to be Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Import Administration. Most recently he served as the International Trade Counsel for the Senate Finance Committee. After growing up in Bethesda, Maryland, Mr. Shirzad received his bachelor's degree from the University of Maryland, his master's degree in public policy from the Kennedy School at Harvard University and his law degree from the University of Virginia.

International Trade Administration,
U.S. Department of Commerce
Faryar Shirzad

Assistant Secretary for Import Administration


Faryar Shirzad was confirmed as the Assistant Secretary for Import Administration on
May 1, 2001. As Assistant Secretary, Mr. Shirzad is responsible for administering the U.S. antidumping and countervailing duty laws. He is also responsible for working with the Office of the United States Trade Representative (USTR) in consultations with the World Trade Organization and other international fora regarding antidumping and countervailing duty laws. In addition, he is responsible for negotiations to promote fair trade in specific sectors, such as steel; heads the Subsidies Enforcement Office; and, serves as the Secretary's delegate on the Foreign Trade Zones Board.
Prior to joining the Administration, Mr. Shirzad served as Lead International Trade Policy Coordinator at the Bush-Cheney transition offices. In that capacity, he coordinated transition efforts relating to USTR, the United States International Trade Commission (USITC), and the International Trade Administration (ITA) at the Department of Commerce.

From 1997 to 2001, Mr. Shirzad served as International Trade Counsel on the majority staff of the Senate Committee on Finance, under then-Chairman William V. Roth, Jr. (DE). In that role, Mr. Shirzad was responsible for advising the Chairman on all maters relating to the Committee's jurisdiction over international trade and was also responsible for coordinating the Finance Committee's oversight of the various trade agencies of the U.S. government.

While in the private sector, Mr. Shirzad was an international trade attorney in Washington, D.C. at the law firms of Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom and Robins, Kaplan, Miller & Ciresi.

Mr. Shirzad obtained his law degree at the University of Virginia Law School. While in law school, Mr. Shirzad served as Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Law & Politics, and was inducted into the Raven Society in recognition of his contributions to the University. He received a Masters in Public Policy, with a concentration in international trade and finance, at the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University. He received a B.S. in Finance (summa cum laude) from the University of Maryland, College Park.

Last edited by cyrus on Mon Feb 20, 2006 11:21 pm; edited 2 times in total
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 03, 2006 9:41 pm    Post subject: Bush loyalist takes international economics to the political Reply with quote

Bush loyalist takes international economics to the political stage
By Caroline Daniel
Published: January 3 2006 02:00 | Last updated: January 3 2006 02:00

Source: http://news.ft.com/cms/s/90b7727c-7bfd-11da-ab8e-0000779e2340.html

In the last two months, Faryar Shirzad has been to Kenya, Uganda, Mongolia, Japan, China, the UK and Russia. He has just returned from the gruelling World Trade Organisation talks in Hong Kong. The only solace is occasional business-class travel.

He has no regrets. As the US deputy national security adviser for international economics, Mr Shirzad says his job is "endlessly fascinating ... It is a real privilege to see a foreign government at the peak of preparedness as they interact with our government, to see the leader of a country sitting down with ours talking through the difficult issues of the day".

After three years at the National Security Council, Mr Shirzad was promoted to lead its international economic staff. To ensure better co-ordination between the economic and foreign policy halves of the White House, he reports to the National Economic Council.

Trade, and its impact on political freedom rather than just commercial interests, is a key theme for President George W. Bush. "Condoleezza Rice [US secretary of state] and Stephen Hadley [national security adviser] are both very cognisant of the degree to which economics are now a driving element of our position in the world and the conduct of international relations ... Both are very mindful of the importance of integrating the economic agenda into the broader national security agenda," says Mr Shirzad.

His portfolio includes oversight of international finance, trade, environment, energy, investment, development assistance, humanitarian assistance and disaster response, being the G8 "sherpa" - the president's personal representative to the G8 process - and managing his preparatory work for most of the large economic summits.

Grant Aldonis, former commerce under-secretary for international trade, who calls Mr Shirzad his "best professional friend", sums up his role: "He is the last guy the president talks to about international economic issues before a decision is made ... He is the consummate staffer. He reserved judgment, thought through problems and gave unvarnished advice."

A framed, handwritten note from the president is prominent on Mr Shirzad's office wall. He is proud but modest, saying he is too embarrassed to read the presidential praise aloud.

Mr Shirzad is attentive without being obsequious. He is seen as a good negotiator and is effusively loyal to Mr Bush, whom he lauds some 10 times on different issues during the interview. The only long pause comes when asked if Mr Bush's decision to impose steel tariffs dented his image on free trade.

For all his discreet style, he is passionate about trade and in agreement with Mr Bush's view of freedom and the importance of democracy, drawn from his own life experience. He is the son of an Iranian diplomat, was born in London and lived in Pakistan and Rome. At 13, he was living in New York during the Iranian revolution in 1979 and vividly recalls the disruption for his family.

"My father had been consul-general, living in a big house, and we had to very quickly get out and assume a very low-profile existence. I cannot imagine what my parents went through, with four children, to lose their country, their job and most of their life assets. The thing we had going for us was our health, and the fact that we, by the grace of God, were in the United States."

The family moved to Bethesda, Maryland. His mother became a census-taker, checking up on families who hadn't filled out their 1980 census forms. He and his father lugged phone directories door to door. The family also set up a delicatessen and began stocking a few Iranian books.

Eventually the books took over so they sold the deli and started a book business, Iranbooks, which is still in operation today. "I think they at one point had the largest collection of Persian-language books outside Iran."

Continuing the career abruptly ended for his father, Mr Shirzad has forged a career in international affairs. He studied finance and went to Harvard graduate school to study public policy, before going to law school. He became a trade lawyer for seven years then served on the US Senate finance committee on the Republican staff.

"Bill Roth [Republican chair of the committee] was a very important influence. He was very much the embodiment of the greatest generation who went into public service at a young age and often at great personal sacrifice."

On the Hill he worked to get fast-track approval for trade deals for the president, which had been bogged down in a decade of partisan bickering. Mr Bush has since used this authority to pursue trade agreements in the Middle East with Morocco, Jordan, Bahrain, the UAE and Oman.

"We are seeing an agenda take hold in places like the Middle East, one that will have an enduring legacy beyond the time that the president is in office," he says. Officials are conscious of making the best use of that authority before it expires in 2007. "It is why the president has been so bold on the trade and WTO agenda."

Some trade analysts, however, argue that this record has come at a price, squandering political capital on obscure deals and leading to congressional fatigue at a time when Democrats are more resistant to supporting free trade agreements. The administration must also build support for a more ambitious Doha round.

Mr Aldonis says Mr Shirzad's challenge over the next year is to "mobilise political support when other themes are working against it, and find a strategy of appealing to internationalist Democrats. They came out of a nothing in Hong Kong and they have got a year left. How do they get out of the cul-de-sac of negotiations?".

Mr Shirzad, ever cautious, offers few clues. "We always have to worry about protectionism because politically it is an easy course for people to take. Trade legislation is hard work and politically difficult, but it is important."

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PostPosted: Tue Jan 03, 2006 10:02 pm    Post subject: White House Advisor: Free Trade Aids Middle East Hopes Reply with quote

White House Advisor: Free Trade Aids Middle East Hopes

By Rebecca Christie



HONG KONG -(Dow Jones)- A top trade advisor to U.S. President George W. Bush said Friday that World Trade Organization talks add momentum to the free-trade plank of the White House's Middle East policy.

Faryar Shirzad, deputy National Security Advisor on international economic issues, said free trade improves economic freedom, which in turn creates momentum for democracy. Trade barriers interfere with individual choices on economic matters, he said.

As the U.S. struggles to create stability in Iraq and Afghanistan, it has reached out economically to other countries in the region. The White House is poised to sign a bilateral trade deal with Bahrain, recently passed by Congress, and deals with Oman and United Arab Emirates are in the works.

The U.S. also welcomed Saudi Arabia's accession to the WTO this week. But negotiators are growing frustrated at the lack of progress toward a broad trade deal at the current trade talks in Hong Kong.

"We're not pleased with the progress of the negotiations," Shirzad told a small group of reporters.

Europe has set the tone of the standoff, refusing to improve its agriculture offer without new concessions from the U.S. and the developing world. But key nations such as India and Brazil have said they will not step forward without some gesture from the world's richest countries, such as setting the official date for phasing out export subsidies. The U.S. and other countries have proposed 2010, but European Union officials haven't budged.

The U.S. remains hopeful that the Doha Development Agenda trade round will move forward, Shirzad said.

"We've obviously had much higher hopes for what we hoped to get out of Hong Kong," Shirzad said. "We're looking forward to using this ministerial meeting to advance the process as much as we can."

-By Rebecca Christie, Dow Jones Newswires; 202-862-9243; Rebecca.Christie@dowjones.com

(END) Dow Jones Newswires
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