TPP goes forward without the United States
According to CNBC, Canada announced it would join 10 other countries in signing a revised Trans-Pacific Partnership in March.
“The deal, renamed Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership, includes a renegotiated arrangement on autos with Japan and the suspension of intellectual property provisions that had been a concern for Canada,” said CNBC.
US cattle industry groups differ on their reaction to the news of the previously-named TPP continuing forward without the United States.
“Withdrawing from TPP was a missed opportunity for the United States to gain greater access to some of the world’s most vibrant and growing markets. As we now enter a pivotal round of NAFTA negotiations, the last thing we need is to take a step backwards in our relationships with Canada and Mexico,” said Kent Bacus, the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association’s Director of International Trade and Market Access
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“We encourage negotiators in Montreal to continue building on the progress made in previous rounds so the United States can focus on tearing down trade barriers in Asia and around the world.
“Unfortunately, the U.S. Senate’s unwillingness to confirm key negotiators like Gregg Doud as the Chief Agricultural Negotiator, leaves the ag sector unfairly underrepresented at the world’s negotiating tables. It’s imperative that the Senate confirm Doud and the many other unconfirmed nominees as soon as possible.”
Bill Bullard, the CEO of R-CALF USA said his group is thankful that President Trump has not taken steps to take part in the TPP.
“Without question, withdrawing from the TPP was the right thing for the U.S. to do and the fact that the other countries continue working to cede their sovereignty to a global government does nothing to change that. The ultimate objective of the TPP is to create global supply chains for products like cattle and beef so multinational meatpackers can source cattle and beef from whichever country produces it the cheapest and then seamlessly switch to a different source country whenever a new country begins to produce cattle and beef even cheaper. The multinational meatpackers used this very block of countries to destroy U.S. cattle prices in 2015 by increasing the United States’ cattle and beef trade deficit with these TPP countries from a $1.5 billion deficit in 2013 to a price-destroying $4.9 billion in 2015.
The United States Cattlemen’s Association spokesman Jess Peterson said his group also remains grateful that the US has not participated in the agreement focused mostly on trade with Asia.
“President Trump took several bold steps this week to put American first when it comes to trade policy and he has the potential to keep doing more if the cattle industry wants to unite and engage. He ramped up trade enforcement actions notably high tariffs on imported products in order to protect U.S. makers of solar panels and washing machines In addition to that effort, Trump Administration negotiators are in Montreal this week working on the re-write of NAFTA.
These are both opportunities for US cattle producers. If cattle producers start getting more involved and reviewing trade data through groups like the US Cattlemen’s Association there are opportunities to evaluate as to whether or not foreign countries are undercutting US cattle producers. With an administration friendly to this position the U.S. cattle industry is in the driver’s seat. When it comes to Montreal and the NAFTA renegotiations this week it’s simple. If Canada and Mexico would like to continue to enjoy their access to the US market then their product needs to be labeled, plain and simple. If this doesn’t happen, the renegotiation will not be successful for U.S. cattle producers. With regard to the US pulling out of the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) the best part of this deal was that included beef access to Japan. No need crying over spilt milk and pulling out of TPP, the U.S. has negotiators to both defend international trade laws on the home front and to gain access to export markets abroad. The Senate needs to confirm US Trade Ambassador Chief Agriculture Negotiator Gregg Doud and let’s get him on the first plane to Tokyo to negotiate a bilateral free trade agreement with Japan. The Japanese want U.S beef and ranchers want to provide them with it, let’s make it happen,” said Peterson.
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