US-Colombia Free Trade Agreement Effective in May – The Office of the US Trade Representative (USTR) has announced that the US-Colombia Free Trade Agreement (FTA) will go into effect May 15, 2012. This FTA is in support of President Obama’s National Export Initiative which has a goal of doubling US exports. According to the USTR, the benefits include an increase in US exports, support of more American jobs, enhancement of US competitiveness, and removal of significant barriers to US goods entering Colombia’s market.

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Sabine Pass Natural Gas Export Plant Approved – The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission has voted in favor of Cheniere Energy’s plan to build a giant natural gas liquefaction and export terminal at Sabine Pass, which straddles the Texas-Louisiana border just north of the Gulf of Mexico. This $10 billion, 500-acre project is scheduled to begin before July.

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Facial Recognition in China’s High Speed Rail Stations – The Beijing-Shanghai high speed rail line is planning on installing facial recognition surveillance systems at three of its stations: Shanghai Hongqiao, Tianjin West, and Jinan West. The identification system will allow officials to identify criminals via surveillance cameras and will work even when people are moving. Police say the real-name ticket purchasing system also helps them catch criminals.

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Port of Stockton Public-Private Partnership Project – The Port of Stockton has put together a public-private partnership that has recently completed a $1.2 rail project. The project is funded by the port in partnership with Union Pacific Railroad and Metropolitan Stevedore. The additional 5,825 feet of new track will allow the Port of Stockton to double its volume of iron ore and coal exports.

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