The United States and the five Central American countries share a total of about $58.63 billion (two-sided) with goods. U.S. merchandise exports to Central America reached $32.75 billion in 2019. Major U.S. exports to Central America include oil, food producers, textiles and substances, as well as computer and electronic products. Major U.S. imports from Central America include clothing products, agricultural products, industrial products and food manufacturers. The United States is the leading provider of goods and services to Central American economies. More than forty percent of total merchandise exports to Central America come from the United States. On June 30, 2005, the U.S.
Senate approved the DR-CAFTA by 54 votes to 45. California senators were divided on the issue, Senator Dianne Feinstein voted “yes” and Senator Barbara Boxer voted against the deal. On June 30, 2005, the U.S. Senate approved CAFTA-DR by 54 votes to 45 and on July 28, 2005, the U.S. House of Representatives approved the pact by a vote of 217 to 215 votes, with two representatives not voting.  This vote was controversial because it was open 1 hour 45 minutes longer than the normal 15 minutes to get some members to change their votes.  For procedural reasons, on July 28, the Senate held a second vote on CAFTA and the pact obtained an additional vote from Senator Joe Lieberman, who was absent on June 30, in favour of the agreement.  Enforcement laws became Public Law 109-053 when it was signed by President George W. Bush on August 2, 2005. North American FREE-EXCHANGE ACCORD (NAFTA) and active bilateral free trade agreements such as the Canada-Costa Rica Free Trade Agreement are seen as a block agreement instead of a free trade agreement of the Americas (FTA).
Panama has concluded negotiations with the United States for a bilateral free trade agreement, known as the Panama-U.S. Trade Agreement, and has been in effect since October 2012. CAFTA-DR is the first free trade agreement between the United States and a small group of developing countries. It was created with the aim of creating new and better economic opportunities by opening markets, removing tariffs, removing barriers to services and much more. In 2015, it was estimated that two-way trade resulted in $53 billion.  Almost all Central American exports to the United States were already duty-free under the 1984 Caribbean Basin initiative. The free trade agreement between the Central Republic and the Dominican Republic (CAFTA-DR) covers the United States and six countries in the greater Central American region. It was the first multilateral free trade agreement between the United States and small developing countries when it was signed on August 5, 2004. In August 2004, the U.S. International Trade Commission published a study on the impact of CAFTA on the Dominican Republic and Central America. The report says the agreement is expected to generate benefits for U.S. exports, economic well-being and market access.
DR-CAFTA is expected to increase U.S. exports by $1.9 billion in global implementation, more than any other recent free trade agreement, including Australia. In the absence of a CAFTA, U.S. products face a competitive disadvantage in the region, as Central American countries have been actively involved in negotiating free trade agreements that do not include the United States.