by Ben Nuelle
DES MOINES- The United States’ Trade Representative believes congress will likely pass the Trans-Pacific Partnership.
United States Trade Representative Michael Froman, Deputy National Security Adviser Ben Rhodes and Retired Lt. General Dan Christman hosted a tele-conference Tuesday focusing on TPP’s strategic benefits.
Froman says the business community has begun to mobilize around the agreement.
He says there’s a lot at stake if TPP doesn’t pass congress.
“For example the cattlemen have made clear they already losing out to Australia’s access to Japan. If Australia has an FCA with Japan. It faces a lower tariff on beef exports and that our market share in Japan is already declining. The longer we go more were going to lose market share in this region to our competitors.”
Froman fears one of those competitors could be China if the U.S. doesn’t sign the agreement.
The National Farmers Union opposes TPP.
NFU President Roger Johnson says trade agreements like TPP hollow out jobs everywhere.
“In the rural communities as well and the industrial center of the country. While we might gain a bit in additional beef exports which are projected to be modestly higher as a result of TPP, we are likely to lose a whole lot more in lost jobs in a slowing economy that is drugged down by this huge trade deficit that we have.”
Johnson argues congress needs to tell trade negotiators to negotiate a balanced trade approach instead of more trade. Meaning not just looking at exports but what we are importing.
He says with most trade agreements like TPP we end up importing more than we export.