Governor Riley backs free trade with Colombia

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) - Gov. Bob Riley has added his voice to the Republicans pushing for a free trade agreement with Colombia.

The Republican governor joined Colombian Ambassador Carolina Barco at the Capitol on Tuesday to encourage Congress to approve the agreement in a lame-duck session after the election.

President Bush and Colombian President Alvaro Uribe did the same thing last month in Washington.

Riley said Alabama's economy is always helped by expanding trade with a friendly nation.

Alabama exported $156 million worth of goods to Colombia last year.

Colombia used the port of Mobile to ship more than $1 billion worth of its goods to the United States last year.

(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)