The Obama Administration needs to “aggressively” pursue the opening of markets at home and abroad, knocking down barriers to trade, according to the American Apparel & Footwear Association (AAFA).

The association was responding to the publication of the 2011 National Trade Estimate Report on Foreign Trade Barriers, which sets out the major barriers faced by US companies.

Co-ordinated by the Office of the US Trade Representative, the review also sets out what the Administration and Congress has done to tackle the issues.

“Knocking down barriers to trade at home and around the world improves America’s competitiveness in the global marketplace,” said AAFA vice president for international trade Nate Herman.

“This report, which outlines many of the trade barriers faced by US brands and exporters, can be a valuable tool in achieving President Barack Obama’s goal of doubling US exports by 2015.”

He added: “The Obama Administration and Congress must continue to aggressively pursue a variety of opportunities to open markets both at home and abroad.

“Passing the long-pending free trade agreements with South Korea, Colombia and Panama, and completing negotiations for a commercially meaningful Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement, will move us one step closer to achieving that laudable goal.”