A coalition of a major farm groups is urging the incoming Biden administration to abandon the disruptive tariffs and trade wars that have been hallmarks of the Trump administration and instead chart a more stable course to increase access to international markets.
“In recent years, American agriculture has been sidelined while its competitors have actively pursued strategic trade agreements with our largest markets,” the farm groups concluded in a report. “At the same time, U.S. production agriculture and supply chains continue to be strained by the multifaceted trade war and Covid-19. These factors not only impact commodity pricing, but also increase input costs, destabilize relationships with trading partners, and have a negative ripple effect on the broader economy.”
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The American Farm Bureau Federation, Corn Refiners Association, U.S. Dairy Export Council, National Corn Growers Association, Iowa Soybean Association, Fresh Produce Association of the Americas and others under the umbrella group Farmers for Free Trade highlighted lost opportunities, such as the U.S. pulling out of the Trans-Pacific Partnership, while the European Union focused on creating new trade alliances.
“We have not negotiated and passed a new agreement through Congress … in many, many years,” Jaime Castaneda, senior vice president for trade policy for USDEC, said Tuesday at an event to unveil the report. “That’s where you need to focus. We understand that we need to work on the offensive.”
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