A group of more than 70 agricultural organizations are urging Congress to renew Trade Promotion Authority. In a letter to every Senator and Congressman, the group said, “Their ability to compete in global markets is tied to the ability of the United States to eliminate impediments to international trade.” Also, “Should Congress not pass TPA, it will signal to our Trans-Pacific Partnership partners and to the world that we are turning our back on the fastest growing economic region in the world.”
Trade agreements implemented since 1989 have resulted in U.S. agricultural exports nearly quadrupling in value, hitting $152 billion in 2014. The major concern of the agriculture and the business communities is without a TPA our trading partners will not make the tough concessions on the TPP and the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership currently being negotiated.
Those signing the letter include American Farm Bureau Federation, American Soybean Association, Animal Health Institute, Grocery Manufacturers Association, National Association of Wheat Growers, National Cattlemen’s Beef Association, National Chicken Council, National Corn Growers Association, National Pork Producers Council, North American Meat Institute, United Egg Producers and the USA Rice Federation. TPA or “fast track” gives the president the authority to negotiate trade agreements with Congress voting up or down on the agreement when completed.