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International sales help America

By Staff | Nov 14, 2018

America’s exceptionally strong economy would be even more robust if this nation were able to sell in the international marketplace more of the products that are grown here. According to the United States Department of Agriculture, exports already produce about 20 percent of farm income. The potential for further growth in those foreign sales is enormous.

Consequently, the recent announcement by the United States and its closest neighbors that they have achieved consensus on the details of a new trade pact to succeed the North American Free Trade Agreement is a welcome development. There are still additional approvals needed before the USMCA becomes final, but negotiators have agreed upon a comprehensive document that is good for all three nations. It is a substantial improvement over NAFTA and should ensure increased export of American agricultural and other products far into the future.

“This new deal increases market certainty for our farmers, provides strong and effective protection for American intellectual property and strengthens overall relations with our North American trading partners,” said U.S. Sen. Charles Grassley in a statement released Oct. 1.

This newspaper shares the Iowa Republican’s overall appraisal of USMCA’s significance for the Hawkeye State.

“I’m optimistic for its positive impact for Iowa farmers, agricultural workers and manufacturers,” Grassley said.

The USMCA would increase access to Canadian markets for American agricultural exports including what, dairy, poultry and egg products. It also preserves zero tariffs on most agricultural sales between the United States and Mexico.

Many of the provisions of the USMCA pertain to the manufacturing sectors. To the extent that industries across the spectrum are strengthened by these agreement the whole nation is benefited. A booming American economy helps everyone.

It’s especially important that the Trump administration’s success in negotiating the USMCA should help it produce improved trade pacts with Europe and China. The trade harmony across North America USMCA will generate increases the incentive for other nations to conclude similarly beneficial arrangements. That’s especially important for Iowa in the case of China, which is a major market for our state’s agricultural products.

International sales of agricultural products is very much in America’s interest. Trade policies that facilitate that goal should be a priority for our leaders in Washington. (The Messenger/Farm New) applauds the Trump administration’s achievement in moving the USMCA forward. It’s an excellent step in the right direction.

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