Priority Issues in a Challenging Trade Environment

March 17, 2017

This has been a busy month for USDBC responding to new trade proposals from the Administration and working in coalition with other like minded agricultural commodity groups to outline our priorities and asks to the Trump Administration. Here are some of the issues we’ve been working on and what we’ve been asking for:

  1. NAFTA – we have sent our own letter and we have joined with the North America Food & Agriculture Trade Group and have communicated to the President and to the USDA transition team requesting no re-opening of NAFTA agriculture provisions and no border tax.
  2. TPP – We joined with the Food & Agriculture Trade Dialogue in a letter to ask President Trump not to withdraw from this 12 nation trade agreement and if that happened, to look for other ways to engage in trade agreements in the Asia Pacific region.
  3. CUBA – We sent a letter asking the President to maintain the progress in normalizing trade relations with the island nation and to continue focusing on full re-engagement with this market.
  4. FOOD AID – We signed off on a letter together with other agricultural trade groups asking the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) to limit reductions to food assistance programs in the FY 18 budget.
  5. We signed off on agricultural coalition letters supporting expedited confirmation of USDA Secretary Sonny Perdue and U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer.

While we do not have a 100% rate of success in our efforts, we believe that our voice has been heard in relaying the critical importance of agricultural exports for the farm economy and the U.S. economy. We will continue to join with our fellow agricultural trade groups and work through our own staff to communicate the priorities and interests of the U.S. dry bean industry to the Trump Administration.

USDA Discretionary Spending Budget At All Time Low (source:  New York Times)

Posted in: Bean Bulletin