Trade Organizations React to Chinese Trade Agreement Signing

USMEF Reacts to the Signing of the Agreement:

Today President Trump and Chinese Vice Premier Liu He signed the U.S.-China “Phase One” trade agreement. The Office of the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) has posted the agreement text and related fact sheets online.

U.S. Meat Export Federation (USMEF) President and CEO Dan Halstrom issued this statement:

For the U.S. pork and beef industries to expand their business in China, the world’s largest and fastest-growing destination for imported red meat, it is critically important that China follows international standards for pork and beef trade. The Phase One trade agreement lays important groundwork toward this goal, and USMEF thanks the Trump administration for addressing the barriers that have hampered U.S. pork and beef exports to China for many years.

Last year China’s red meat imports exceeded $14 billion, a 65% increase from 2018. The U.S. industry looks forward to capturing a greater share of this rapidly growing market.

 

Edge Dairy Cooperative Released Comment on the Agreement:

Edge Dairy Farmer Cooperative, one of the largest dairy cooperatives in the country, issued a statement today after the signing of the first phase of a trade deal between the United States and China.

Statement from Brody Stapel, president of Edge and a dairy farmer in eastern Wisconsin:

“Given the massive potential China has as an export market for dairy farmers and processors, a trade agreement that increases our opportunities there is a positive step.

“The importance of the Chinese market to the dairy community grows by the day. Within the next few years, China will surpass the United States to become the world’s largest dairy market, reaching a value of $114 billion a year by 2024.

“As we look forward to reviewing the details specific to dairy in this agreement, we trust that the deal reflects how significant China is to the sustainability of our businesses.

“The deal does not address retaliatory tariffs China has placed on our dairy products. It is important that removing these tariffs be part of subsequent agreements.

“We appreciate the administration’s commitment to making sure our country gets a fair shake, and we hope dairy is a top priority in further negotiations with China.”

 

The National Cattlemens Association Reacts:

The National Cattlemen’s Beef Association today applauded the signing of a Phase-One trade agreement with China, saying this agreement will lay the groundwork for American-produced beef to be highly competitive in the world’s most populous market.

“The Phase-One Agreement with China will be a game changer for the U.S. beef industry,” said NCBA President Jennifer Houston, who joined President Trump at the White House for today’s event. “For many years, Chinese consumers have been denied access to high-quality U.S. beef—the same U.S. beef we feed to our families. Non-scientific trade barriers like the ban on production technologies, the extensive traceability requirements, and the 30-month BSE restriction have greatly limited our ability to tap into growing beef demand in China. The removal of these massive trade barriers gives Chinese consumers access to the U.S. beef they desire, and it gives America’s cattlemen and cattlewomen the opportunity to provide U.S. beef to a growing consumer-base that represents one-fifth of the global population and a middle-class that is greater than the entire U.S. population.

“We cannot begin to express our thanks to President Trump for fighting for America’s cattle producers,” Houston continued. “Restoring U.S. beef access to China was the top agenda item resulting from the Mar-a-Lago summit in 2017, and our negotiators have never stopped working to reopen the Chinese market for U.S. beef. The Trump Administration did not allow the odds to dictate the outcome, and because of their hard work and dedication, America’s cattle producers and Chinese consumers will have a stronger relationship that will benefit both countries for generations. Today is a great day for the U.S. beef industry and the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association.”

When American-produced beef was banned from China for 14 years, NCBA worked with the U.S. government for more than a decade to reopen access to the market of nearly 1.4 billion consumers. American producers scored an initial victory in June 2017, when the Chinese market was reopened for the first time since 2003. NCBA joined U.S. Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue and American Ambassador to China Terry Branstad in Beijing to celebrate and mark the official reopening of the Chinese market.

However, many non-science-based, non-tariff trade barriers remained in place, which limited the amount of American-produced beef that qualified for China. NCBA says that this Phase-One Agreement will begin knocking down those trade barriers and significantly improve access to what is potentially a top export market for U.S. beef producers.

 

Iowa Soybean Association Reacts:

Today’s signing of a phase-one U.S.-China trade agreement is welcomed news for soybean farmers.

When added to the U.S.-Japan trade deal signed late last year and pending Congressional approval of a U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement, progress with China offers farmers some optimism as we prepare for the start of another growing season.

Reaching this phase-one agreement, however, is just the first step on a long journey to restoring nearly two years of lost sales to the world’s No-1 soybean buyer. America is now a residual – rather than primary – supplier to a country of 1.4 billion people. The impact of this trade inversion will not be overcome quickly or easily.

While few details regarding the broader trade issues involved in this agreement have been released, today’s action is a step in the right direction.

As additional negotiations proceed, the Iowa Soybean Association will continue to pursue new market opportunities and increased sales. An ISA-led trade mission will soon travel to Bangladesh and Pakistan to meet with key soybean buyers and processors. The ISA will also continue to support the domestic growth of livestock, poultry and dairy production and new uses to drive greater soybean demand and sales.

 

 

 

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