Tue, 08 Aug 2017
US - The National Pork Producers Council says maintaining zero tariffs on the movement of pork is the top priority of US pork producers as the US, Canada and Mexico move to modernise NAFTA, according to Bruce Cochrane.
The first round of talks involving Canada, the United States and Mexico aimed at revamping the North American Free Trade Agreement is scheduled from 16 to 20 August in Washington.
Dave Warner, with the National Pork Producers Council, says the number one request of the pork industry is to maintain the zero tariff rate on pork trade in North America.
Canadian pork coming into the United States or US pork going into Canada or Mexico goes into those countries with zero tariff, so there's no tax on pork traded in North America.
That's our number one goal, to maintain that zero tariff rate, to make sure that there's no disruption in pork traded among the three countries.
I know that the administration wants to modernize it.
It's 23 years old.
There's some sectors that weren't even considered when the deal was first negotiated such as e-commerce so they want to bring it up to date.
And there's a few things that can be done I think that would be of benefit to the pork industry, be of benefit to US agriculture, better harmonization of rules and regulations, making sure that any kind of regulations that might affect trade are based on science and that which ever country is implementing it be transparent about that, so there's some things that can be done but our main goal is really just to maintain what we've had for 23 years.
Mr Warner says the 388 billion dollars worth of US agricultural exports to those countries last year not only benefited US farmers, they generated 48 billion dollars worth of activity in the US economy and supported almost 300 thousand US agricultural jobs.