House Members Call for Strong SPS Provisions in Trade Agreements

Congressman Tim Griffin (R-AR) and Ron Kind (D-WI) along with 76 other congressmen wrote U.S. Trade Representative Michael Froman on the significant potential for American agricultural exports to expand in the Asia-Pacific and European trade regions. The congressmen emphasized the need for USTR and the administration to negotiate the strongest possible sanitary and phytosanitary (SPS) measures in both the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) and the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) currently under negotiation. The congressman said, “The TPP and TTIP negotiations offer the United States an opportunity to go beyond the World Trade Organization (WTO) rules to create more robust SPS measures.”

This could assist in removing non-science-based import barriers in foreign markets faced by American agriculture exports. In the letter to USTR, the congressmen reminded the administration, “U.S. producers too often confront import barriers in foreign markets that are not science-based. These attempts to protect foreign markets are spurious and frustrate the desires of our producers, the intent and spirit of the trade agreements, and ultimately, the consumers who want and seek American agriculture.” 

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