Recent pledges by U.S. and Chinese leaders to cut carbon emissions overshadowed a meeting of the minds on trade that could pay dividends more quickly.

They include an agreement on tariffs for high-tech goods that could boost the economies of the U.S. and many other nations. Several of the deals are preliminary, and some ultimately will require the consent of Congress. That’s all the more reason for the U.S. to approve the “fast-track” authority that provides a workable framework for such agreements while still giving lawmakers the chance to block bad trade pacts.

The biggest of last week’s breakthroughs was China’s decision to support a new version of the Information Technology Agreement, which would slash tariffs on advanced microchips, video game consoles, medical imaging equipment, GPS devices and a slew of other high-tech products and components. The new pact would affect about $1 trillion in goods sold annually and create up to 60,000 U.S. jobs.

U.S. exporters tend to benefit disproportionately from such deals because they face much larger tariffs than companies exporting goods to this country. More important, cutting tariffs will reduce the price of high-tech products and components, boosting demand while lowering the manufacturing cost of every other product and service that incorporates these technologies.

But lawmakers have blocked “the “fast-track” bill, which would provide a clear path to an up-or-down vote on trade deals, citing concern about agreements still being negotiated. These include the controversial Trans- Pacific Partnership, which seeks to lower trade barriers among a dozen countries on the Pacific Ocean.

That’s a counterproductive strategy. If a trade pact is a bad deal, Congress can still vote it down, even if fast track is approved. Lawmakers should stop using their worries about the administration’s trade ambitions as an excuse to impede the United States from reaching any trade deals at all.