Taiwan recently was in Iowa to announce its plans to purchase more Iowa soybeans. Their purchases will help take about 10-15% of the trading loss to China off the table. So why we do we not have full trade agreements with them?
Taiwan buys a significant amount of agricultural goods from the United States. But, it is one Ag commodity forming the barrier to a bilateral trade deal. The commodity is pork. Taiwan will not buy U.S. pork that has been treated with the leanness additive ractopamine. US-Taiwan Business Council President Rupert Hammond-Chambers explains.
However, Hammond-Chambers says leaving the topic as a pre-condition hinders trade growth with Taiwan, as opposed to reaching a compromised settlement.
A Taiwan trade deal could make a top-ten U.S. trade partner much more profitable for the United States Ag sector. But, he says that will take leadership in the U.S. Trade Representative’s office and Congress. Hammond-Chambers expressed disappointment with Iowa Senator Chuck Grassley’s comments this week, which reverted to an earlier stance saying Taiwan must drop its U.S. pork ban first.