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Japan trade deal best news for Ag in 2019

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Last week, Japan’s legislative body, the Diet, approved the partial trade agreement with the United States. In a year fraught with trade disputes and a vindictive Mother Nature, getting this approval might just be the best news farmers have gotten all year. The U.S. Meat Export Federation (USMEF) highlights what this deal means for the red meat industry.

USMEF President and CEO Dan Halstrom says the deal, which will go into effect on January 1st, 2020, will have significant effects for pork and beef entering the country. The disadvantages we had to our competitors was a huge impact on our trade.

Just how much demand is there from the island nation? Halstrom says Japan’s demand value is roughly three billion dollars. Halstrom says this has the potential to grow even further into the future.

Halstrom praises the work of the United States Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer and the United States Department of Agriculture. Halstrom says a lot of time and resources were put into this agreement.

Halstrom says we are also blessed with Prime Minister Abe’s realization of important agricultural trade between our two countries is, and that the Japanese government was so willing to make the agreement work.

This is only the first part of a negotiated trade deal with Japan. There are still kinks to work out for a few Ag sectors, namely dairy. However, negotiations on the second phase of the agreement are set to start early in 2020, and this phase one agreement does not necessarily mean we are done talking about Japan’s interest in U.S. agriculture products.

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