How Could USMCA Impact Washington Ag?

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WASHINGTON AG NETWORK – GLENN VAAGEN – Many in the Ag industry say USMCA will be good news for American farmers if passed.  But how specifically could the updated NAFTA deal impact Northwest producers.  The Washington Council on International Trade recently conducted a report, which found Washington’s economy stand to gain substantially if USMCA is implemented.  Lori Otto Punke President of the WCIT said USMCA is good news specifically for Washington dairy and wines.

“So I think that the most important thing is that it preserved NAFTA’s market access, and rules provision and really expands some of them, in important areas.”

While USMCA is good news for the Washington farming community, Punke is very concerned that the updated agreement does not remove tariffs on steel and aluminum implemented by the White House.

“The retaliatory duties that are imposed on Washington state products as a result of Section 232 are very detrimental, so we would like to see those tariffs lifted and a resolution to sort of the 232 issues generally.  We know that there’s been an impact on Washington state’s exports, we’re down about 28% this year.”

Otto Punke said those tariffs are also wearing on the typically close relationship Washington enjoys with Canada and Mexico.  Visit WCIT’s Website to read the entire report on USMCA.

Posted By: Glenn Vaagen, Washington Ag Network, December 10, 2018

Picture: USA Today