NCGA and NPPC Urge Congress to Favour Free Trade Agreements

by 5m Editor
10 July 2008, at 2:58pm

US - At a trade symposium this week in Indianapolis, the National Corn Growers Association and the National Pork Producers Council urged participants to ask Congress to vote in favor of free trade agreements with South Korea, Colombia, and Panama.

The organizations said the implementation of the free trade agreements will provide significant support to the economy in the United States and abroad. “The trade agreements with South Korea, Colombia and Panama have been skillfully negotiated on behalf of U.S. agriculture,“ the groups said in a letter they asked conference attendees to send to their members of Congress. “The trade agreements with South Korea, Colombia, and Panama will cut tariffs and barriers to trade that currently restrict products from ever entering these countries.“

NCGA President Ron Litterer noted that trade agreements—particularly with Colombia—will provide access for the country’s grain, pork, poultry, and dairy needs. Litterer said trade with Colombia will improve the standard of living for both trading partners.

“The free trade agreements go a long way in supporting rural agriculture,“ Litterer said. “With Colombia’s current tariff for corn at 68 percent, the Colombia Trade Promotion Agreement will have immediate duty free access to the country’s market for 2.1 million metric tons of corn.“

David Hardin, Indiana Pork Producers Association past president, said the Colombia agreement provides the United States with preferential access to the Colombian market.

“The Colombia free trade provides new market access to U.S. pork producers and will add $1.63 per market animal,“ Hardin said. “We are pleased that Colombia has agreed to accept pork from all U.S. Department of Agriculture inspected processing facilities.“

The National Corn Growers Association, in conjunction with the Indiana Corn Marketing Council, National Pork Producers Council and Indiana Pork Producers Association, hosted the 2008 Corn and Pork Trade Symposium Tuesday in Indianapolis. During the event, participants learned about how trade impacts the corn and pork industries. Indiana Governor Mitch Daniels was the keynote speaker. Dermot Hayes, Iowa State University; Paul Drazek, DTB Associates, LLP; and James Wiesemeyer, Informa Economics provided trade economics and policy presentations.

5m Editor