America’s top Ag official says international trade could help boost the United States economy.
United States Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue notes international trade has proved challenging. However, Perdue believes the United States is poised for improvement.
“We’ve had fairly good weather in most crop growing regions in the world. We have a glut of commodities, and we (recently) swore in a new Undersecretary for Trade, Ted McKinney,” Perdue said. “He’s on the road all of the time, and is in Colombia and Panama this week. McKinney’s been knocking on doors and asking where we can introduce more great U.S. products.”
An international trade opportunity sitting on agriculture’s forefront is the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). Perdue says he does not know what will happen to NAFTA by day’s end. However, he believes President Trump wants the United States to remain a part of the agreement.
“I’m convinced our President wants the deal because he knows the power of the Ag economy,” Perdue said. “He wants to make sure we have a healthy, thriving farm economy because he knows that it contributes to the American economy.”
Perdue adds Trump focuses his attention to manufactured products within NAFTA.
“He’s thinking about manufactured products in NAFTA, obviously with Canada,” Perdue said. If they’re going to use a supply management system in their daries, they need to manage the supply. Right now, they’re overproducing and decreasing global milk prices.”
Perdue spoke about boosting the American economy through international trade at the Agricultural Retailers Association (ARA) Conference in Phoenix, Arizona Thursday.