USDA-FAS Report: China’s Meat and Poultry Import Forecast, 2018

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."
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NAFTA Renegotiation: Round Two Complete; While Concerns Surface on Korean Trade Pact

The U.S., Mexico and Canada concluded a second round of NAFTA discussions yesterday as President Trump has continued to criticize the trade measure.  Meanwhile, concerns surfaced over the weekend about the possibility of a U.S. withdrawal from the South Korean trade pact that went into force in 2012.  However, subsequent remarks from U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer yesterday appeared to mitigate the likelihood of that happening.  President Tump's recent trade activity was strongly criticized in an opinion column today by Robert B. Zoellick, a former World Bank president, U.S. trade representative and deputy secretary of state.  Today's update provides an overview of recent news articles highlighting these trade issues, which have important implications for U.S. agricultural producers.
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NAFTA Renegotiation: Round One Complete, President Trump Reiterates Threat to Pull Out of the Agreement

Sara Schaefer-Munoz and Bob Davis reported in Monday's Wall Street Journal that, "[In the opening-round of talks to remake the North American Free Trade Agreement] which concluded Sunday, the [U.S., Mexico, and Canada] said in a trilateral statement they had made 'detailed conceptual presentations' of their positions and were working toward 'an ambitious outcome' through a fast-paced schedule of negotiations. Early tensions over areas such as the so-called rules of origin—a major issue for the automotive industry—signaled the tough bargaining that lies ahead as the three nations try to wrap up a deal by early next year."
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NAFTA 2.0: Renegotiations Begin

William Mauldin and Paul Vieira reported earlier this week at The Wall Street Journal Online that, "The Trump administration launched the renegotiation of the North American Free Trade Agreement Wednesday by laying out a starkly different vision from that of its two continental trading partners of how the pact has worked and how radically it should be rewritten. The wide gap between the administration’s opening rhetoric and the positions of Mexico and Canada suggests a difficult road ahead in redoing the 23-year-old accord, even discounting for the posturing at the opening of any negotiation."
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House Ag Committee Examines NAFTA- Trade Issues

Since President Trump took office in January, many in the agricultural sector have been leery of potential executive branch actions on trade, particularly with respect to China and our NAFTA trading partners.  As the NAFTA renegotiation process begins to unfold, the House Agriculture Committee held a hearing yesterday titled, "Renegotiating NAFTA: Opportunities for Agriculture."  Today's update looks at some of the issues that lawmakers highlighted at yesterday's Ag Committee hearing.
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