Obama’s recent State of the Union address included comments about America’s free trade agreements (FTAs) with countries such as Colombia, Korea, and Panama. The President said, “We have to seek new markets aggressively, just as our competitors are. If America sits on the sidelines while other nations sign trade deals, we will lose the chance to create jobs on our shores.”

And yet, America’s trade agreements with the countries mentioned above have sat stagnant since the President took office over a year ago. An LA Times editorial reminds Obama that in order to achieve his SOTU promise of “doubling our exports in the next five years”, more significant steps must be taken to pass those free trade agreements.

A Korean newspaper reports that while the language used by President Obama was hopeful, he has not presented the Korean government with a timeline for ratification. The Foreign Affairs and Trade committee of South Korea’s National Assembly passed the FTA a while ago and is waiting for the US Congress to do the same. The LA Times article stresses that the South Korean FTA is especially important to exporters in California who trade dairy, nuts, and pomegranates to Korea.

Meanwhile, there is even less movement concerning the Latin America trade agreements. A story in the Latin Business Chronicle points out the double-talk occurring in the US government, saying that while Secretary Tim Geithner promised there would be action on the FTAs very soon, Congress has made no such move. The US Farm Bureau is among many groups urging Congress to hurry up and pass the agreements, saying the US agriculture industry is losing money and jobs to countries with more competitive trade laws.

President Obama claims he is serious about creating jobs and pulling the US economy out of its slump. It’s time for the President’s actions to speak much louder than his words.