With two newly confirmed ag trade officials, Doug McKalip and Alexis Taylor, the U.S. has a significant trade agenda for 2023. According to Dave Salmonsen, American Farm Bureau Federation Senior Government Affairs Director, the Biden administration is engaged in several negotiations.
“The biggest is the Indo Pacific Economic Framework. There’s also an upcoming continuation of talks with Taiwan and continuing, also, discussions with the United Kingdom, and discussions were also started last fall and will continue with Kenya. Outside of the direct negotiations other countries there’s the continuing efforts to do reform at the World Trade Organization. So, lots of work ahead.”
And there are trade issues to work out in North America, including Mexico’s decree regarding corn imports.
“Actually, just next week, January 10, there’s a North American Leaders Summit in Mexico City, and we know this issue is on the agenda. If it can’t be resolved that may have to go to a case under the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement. And with Canada, looks like we’re heading towards another case on their dairy import regulations. The way they’ve been enforcing the regulations they put in place after the USMCA went into force isn’t giving the U.S. the access that we had negotiated.”
As for Congress, Salmonsen adds there’s a few trade topics to consider there, as well.
“Yeah, there’s a lot of ideas of things to do on trade. I think what you’ll see especially from the House Republicans is more of a push to a little more substance in these trade discussions, and I think they’ll take up getting a new Trade Promotion Authority legislation, along with the usual oversight that they’ll do, and trying to make sure that trade is a part of our economic growth.”