NAWG and U.S. Wheat Associates Welcome Official Signing of USCMA, Encourage Repeat with Japan
Today, leaders of the United States, Canada and Mexico officially signed the revised North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), now known as the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA). The National Association of Wheat Growers (NAWG) and U.S. Wheat Associates (USW) applaud the three countries for working together to finalize USMCA.
This agreement includes important provisions for wheat farmers. Most notably, USMCA retains tariff-free access to imported U.S. wheat for our long-time flour milling customers in Mexico. That is a crucial step toward rebuilding trust in U.S. wheat as a reliable supplier in this important, neighboring market.
In addition, the USMCA makes important progress towards more open commerce for U.S. wheat farmers near the border with Canada. Currently under Canadian law, wheat grown in the United States delivered to Canadian grain elevators is automatically designated as the lowest grade wheat. Canadian wheat delivered to U.S. elevators however may enter the system without penalty. This disincentive for U.S. farmers when they would otherwise see higher cash bids across the border is unfair. The updated USMCA agreement would enable U.S. varieties registered in Canada to be afforded reciprocal treatment. While there are remaining challenges, we applaud the Administration for negotiating this critical provision in the USMCA and taking a big step towards reciprocal trade along the U.S.-Canadian border.
NAWG and USW look forward to Congress moving forward in reviewing the agreement through Trade Promotion Authority (TPA) requirements.
In the meantime, U.S. wheat farmers are excited to see the Administration build on the momentum of USMCA by initiating negotiations with Japan (http://bit.ly/2ORCSC1). That is needed to end the threat of major wheat export losses without a new trade agreement. USW and NAWG are anxious for a quick deal and policies that would provide long-term stability in the critical Japanese market.
U.S. Grains Council Statement On USMCA Signing
U.S. A statement from U.S. Grains Council President and CEO Tom Sleight:
“The ceremony Friday to sign the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) is an important next step in the new pact’s final approval and the process of modernizing the most important trade agreement to U.S. grain farmers and exporters.
“In the latest marketing year, Mexico and Canada again proved to be top buyers of U.S. feed grains in all forms, and both countries still hold significant potential for market expansion given the right trade policy frameworks and the robust market development we intend to undertake there with our partners.
“We applaud the many members of the Trump Administration, as well as their Mexican and Canadian colleagues, who worked diligently to negotiate this agreement. We see its forward movement as a sign our countries will continue our robust relationship, as business partners and friends.”