U.S. agricultural exports in fiscal year 2017 increased over $10 billion to the third-highest level on record. Although the U.S. remains the second largest exporter of agricultural goods in the world, the share of U.S. agricultural exports has fallen from 23 percent of global value in 1995 to 12.5 percent in 2013. Nonetheless, U.S. agricultural exports to NAFTA countries and to China have increased since 1995, highlighting the importance of these regions to U.S. agricultural trade. Today's update looks at these issues in more detail, along with a brief update on the NAFTA renegotiations.
Today's update takes a closer look at recent USDA agricultural trade export data for fiscal year 2017, and then proceeds to examine recent news items that provide perspective on NAFTA trade issues from lawmakers, the Secretary of Agriculture, farmers, and Mexico.
Last week, USDA updated portions of its monthly agricultural trade data. Despite some positive indications, news reports demonstrate that concerns over the renegotiation of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) persist in both Mexico and the U.S. agricultural sector.
A report earlier this month from USDA's Economic Research Service (ERS) ("Global Ethanol Mandates: Opportunities for U.S. Exports of Ethanol and DDGS," by Jayson Beckman and Getachew Nigatu) noted that, "The increased use of ethanol globally could provide strong and diverse export market opportunities for U.S. ethanol and ethanol byproducts." Parts of the ERS report are highlighted in this update.
Ana Swanson reported on Tuesday at The New York Times Online that, "Until Tuesday, the North American Free Trade Agreement looked like it might be headed for a quick demise. Now, it could be headed for a slow, painful one. The United States, Canada and Mexico said on Tuesday that they would extend Nafta negotiations into next year, with the parties citing 'significant conceptual gaps' in how to rewrite the 1994 trade pact."
On Thursday, the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Foreign Agricultural Service (FAS) released its biannual "Livestock and Poultry: World Markets and Trade" report, which is published in April and October, and is "designed to give a snapshot of the current situation among the major players in world beef, pork, and broiler meat trade." Today's update provides a recap of some of the highlights from the FAS report, which was titled, "China’s Meat and Poultry Import Forecast 2018: Decline and Constrained Growth."
William Mauldin reported on Wednesday at The Wall Street Journal Online that, "President Donald Trump, speaking alongside Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, opened the door to separate trade deals with Canada and Mexico to replace the North American Free Trade Agreement and repeated his warnings that the U.S. could withdraw from the pact."
Last week, the U.S. Department of Agriculture updated its monthly agricultural trade data. Today's update includes an overview of some observations from the data with a focus on corn, soybeans, wheat and livestock.
On Thursday, the Senate Finance Committee held a hearing to consider three nominees for key trade positions, while the Senate Ag Committee questioned two nominees for Undersecretary posts at the USDA. Today's update highlights some key points from the hearings, including issues related to agricultural trade and the Conservation Reserve Program.
Today's update highlights recent information on U.S. agricultural exports from the U.S. Department of Agriculture, and also explores agricultural related trade issues that have been identified in recent news articles.