October 1, 2018
Sources: National Pork Producers Council and North American Meat Institute
It’s no longer called the North American Free Trade Agreement, but the United States, Canada and Mexico have finally reached an agreement to update the 1994 pact that governs more than $1.2 trillion worth of trade among the three nations. Late Sunday night, Canada agreed to sign the new United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement, that would allow U.S. farmers greater access to Canada’s dairy market and address concerns about potential U.S. auto tariffs.
The National Pork Producers Council praises the Trump administration for establishing a free trade agreement that preserves zero-tariff access for U.S. pork to Mexico and Canada. The agreement, which was sent by the administration to Capitol Hill for ratification today, will be designated by NPPC as a “key vote” to ensure that its members are informed about “yes” and “no” votes on the pact.
“We thank the administration for its diligent work to complete recent agreements that maintain zero-tariff access to three of U.S. pork’s top five markets,” says Jim Heimerl, NPPC president and a pork producer from Johnstown, Ohio. “The three-way pact with Mexico and Canada, our largest and fourth largest export markets, respectively, and the recently signed agreement with Korea represent welcome momentum during what has been a challenging year.”
Last week, the administration formally signed a modernized free trade agreement with South Korea that retains the zero-tariff access to U.S. pork’s fifth largest export market.
Heimerl says, “We urge Congress to quickly ratify the U.S.-Mexico-Canada trade agreement, and we’ll closely monitor this as a key vote for our members, who have demonstrated incredible perseverance as the administration realigns U.S. global trade policy.”
U.S. pork is currently on three trade retaliation lists that have placed 40% of total exports under punitive tariffs. NPPC continues to urge the administration to remove tariffs on Mexican steel and aluminum imports so that country will lift its 20% retaliatory tariff on U.S. pork.
The North American Meat Institute also applauds the Trump administration’s success at modernizing NAFTA.
“Under NAFTA, U.S. meat and poultry exports to Mexico and Canada have thrived as import duties were removed and non-scientific barriers to trade have been significantly reduced,” says Meat Institute President and CEO Julie Anna Potts. “The North American market for the meat and poultry industry is nearly completely integrated and is essential to its long-term viability. The agreement submitted today to Congress safeguards the core tenets of NAFTA that have strengthened the U.S. meat sector and overall economy.”
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