Tag Archives: Trade

A statement from Ryan LeGrand, president and chief executive officer of the U.S. Grains Council (USGC):

 

“The U.S. Grains Council is pleased to hear the United States and Japan have made their trade agreement official, after the Japanese Diet ratified it earlier in the day and it is expected to go into effect on January 1, 2020.

 

“The agreement solidifies trade with our second largest corn market, immediately reduces U.S. corn and sorghum imports for all purposes to a zero-tariff level, reduces the U.S. barley mark up and includes a staged tariff reduction for U.S. ethanol and U.S. corn, barley and sorghum flour. In addition, U.S. feed and food corn, corn gluten feed, and DDGS will continue to receive duty-free market access.

 

“Japan purchased more than $2 billion of U.S. corn in the most recent marketing year, is an important market for food and feed barley as well as sorghum and promises to be an important future market for U.S. ethanol.

 

“In negotiating and approving this agreement, our countries have built on a long-standing relationship of mutual trust and embodied that sentiment for the foreseeable future. We look forward to continued work with our Japanese partners on a more comprehensive trade package that will address important non-tariff barriers and what we hope is continued improvement in the ethanol sector.”

In a flurry of meeting with reporters Tuesday in London, President Donald Trump says he has no deadline for finalizing a complete trade deal with China.

China and the U.S. are still working to reach a phase one agreement, with an unofficial deadline of December 15, but an overall agreement may extend beyond the 2020 elections. Trump told reporters, “In some ways, I think it’s better to wait until after the election.”

Trump says China wants to reach an agreement, adding, “the China trade deal is dependent on one thing: Do I want to make it?” Trump claims he is doing “very well” in the talks with China. The President also pointed out the $28 billion in trade aid given to U.S. farmers, with “many billions” leftover, adding about the funds, “that got them whole.”

China wants Trump to remove tariffs in reaching a phase one agreement that also includes $40-$50 billion in purchases of U.S. agricultural products over two years.

Trade negotiations with China continue as the U.S. and China seek to wrap up a phase one agreement, promised two weeks ago. U.S. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross told Fox Business News, “the ball is in China’s court,” in an interview Monday. He says the talks are making progress, but described the negotiations as “one step forward, one step backward.”

If nothing happens before December 15, President Donald Trump plans to move forward with a round of tariffs on China, as Ross called the date a “logical deadline.” China wants the U.S. to roll back tariffs in making the agreement. Meanwhile, Ross again confirmed China promised $40-$50 billion of purchases of U.S. ag products as part of the agreement.

China was a near $20 billion market for U.S. agriculture before the trade war began. However, that market has dropped roughly 50 percent since the trade war began, as retaliatory tariffs by China focused on U.S. agricultural products.

Another solid week on the cash cattle.  Could there be a correction headed our way?  Any holiday pressure that might work into.  How are cattle weights.  Holcomb KS plant to start back up this week.  How do you think the market react?  Funds are long.  Some red flags popping up.  Hogs…way to cheap but China is playing a role in that.  10% of corn crop still in the field.  Basis in corn market.   China on again off again.  December 15th…will we see changes before then? Mixed grain markets.

On Nov. 28, the European Parliament voted to approve a plan granting the United States a country-specific share of the European Union’s duty-free high-quality beef quota. The agreement, which was signed and announced in August, is detailed in this press release from the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR).

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

Approval by the European Parliament keeps this agreement on track for implementation in early 2020, which is outstanding news for the U.S. beef industry and our customers in Europe. Lack of capacity in the duty-free quota has been a source of frustration on both sides of the Atlantic, and a U.S.-specific share of the quota will help ensure that U.S. beef can enter the European market 52 weeks per year, without delay or interruption.

The European Union is one of the highest value destinations in the world for U.S. beef, and consistent access will not only benefit U.S. producers and exporters, but also European importers and their clientele. USMEF thanks USTR and USDA for negotiating this agreement and securing its approval, which will bolster the U.S. industry’s efforts to expand the European customer base for U.S. beef.

WASHINGTON, D.C., November 26, 2019 – Securing zero-tariff access to China for U.S. pork would be an economic boon for American agriculture and the country, according to the National Pork Producers Council (NPPC). Based on an analysis by Iowa State University (ISU) Economist Dermot Hayes, NPPC says unrestricted access to the Chinese chilled and frozen market would reduce the overall trade deficit with China by nearly six percent and generate 184,000 new U.S. jobs in the next decade. NPPC today launched a digital campaign to spotlight the importance of opening the Chinese market to U.S. pork as trade negotiations continue.

 

“Were it not for China’s tariffs that are severely limiting access to American goods and other restrictions, including customs clearance delays, U.S. pork could be an economic powerhouse, creating thousands of new jobs, expanding sales and dramatically slashing our nation’s trade deficit. China’s actions would unleash tremendous benefits to U.S. pork producers, our nation and Chinese consumers who rely on this essential protein,” said Hayes.

 

According to Dr. Hayes’ analysis, U.S. pork sales would generate $24.5 billion in sales if U.S. pork gained unrestricted access to the world’s largest pork-producing nation over 10 years.

 

“The U.S. pork industry is missing out on an unprecedented sales opportunity in China when it most needs an affordable, safe and reliable supply of its favored protein,” said NPPC President David Herring, a hog farmer from Lillington, N.C. “The United States is the lowest-cost producer of pork in the world, but with 72 percent tariffs we are not nearly as competitive as Europe, Brazil, Canada and other nations.”

 

Pork is a staple of the Chinese diet and a major element of the country’s consumer price index. China’s swine herd has been devastated by African swine fever, a disease affecting only pigs with no human health or food safety risks, reducing domestic production by more than 50 percent and resulting in a mounting food price inflation challenge for the country.

 

NPPC has launched a digital communications campaign to broaden awareness for the unique opportunity for U.S. pork in China. For more information, click here.

Fewer and fewer days remain for Congress to pass the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement in 2019. Washington is sending mixed signals on whether the deal can be completed this year.

Some lawmakers have suggested the House stay in session an extra week, adding time to the calendar to wrap up business before Christmas. Meanwhile, last week, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said a labor deal in USMCA was “imminent.” However, President Donald Trump claimed this week Pelosi was holding up the trade deal to gather more votes in favor of impeaching Trump.

Representative Richard Neal, who chairs the Democrats USMCA working group, last week suggested union support was within reach, adding “we need it.” AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka met with Pelosi and other Democrats Tuesday, while also vowing during an unrelated speech to not allow Democrats to fold on core issues.

Trumka stated that until USMCA includes stronger labor standards, “there is still more work to be done,” according to Reuters. Democrats leaving the meeting were skeptical that an agreement could be reached this year.

Ag Secretary Sonny Perdue is hoping that a third round of trade aid payments to farmers will be unnecessary in 2020 because of a new trade deal with China.

The Hagstrom Report says Perdue spoke with reporters last week shortly after returning from a “successful” trade mission to Mexico. Farmers “would rather have trade than aid,” Perdue says. At the same time, he did say the second round of 2019 trade aid is approved and will be heading to farmers soon. “We have just gotten authorization on the second tranche,” he said. “I expect payments to be out to farmers by late November or early December.” The U.S.-Mexico-Canada Trade Agreement was one of the big topics of conversation on the trip to Mexico.

Perdue says Mexican officials are hoping Congress will sign off on the agreement as soon as possible. “They’ve done their work, as you know, and they’re anxious for us to complete our task as well,” Perdue says. Immigration was another topic of conversation with Mexican officials. Perdue is hopeful that the Mexican government will begin a program to “pre-certify” workers southeast Mexico for the H-2A Program. Southeast Mexico is one of the most poverty-stricken areas of the country.

Vice President Mike Pence again called on the House of Representatives to bring the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement to a vote. Speaking at an event in Virginia over the weekend, Pence says Democrats in the House “are spending all their time on endless investigations and a partisan impeachment.”

Pence told the event, “The time has come for your congressmen and every Democrat from Virginia to put politics aside and pass USMCA.” House Democrats maintain the impeachment process will not impede progress on the trade agreement. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi last week hinted she was optimistic they could reach a deal with the White House.

Few days remain on the legislative calendar to pass the agreement this year, and the House is on recess this week. Pelosi told reporters last week, “hopefully we can do it sooner,” but she wouldn’t rule out the process stretching into next year. The U.S., Canada and Mexico agreed to the accord now more than a year ago, and Mexico ratified the agreement this summer.