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TPA Debate Heads to House

Tuesday, June 2, 2015

(North American Meat Institute)

The U.S. House of Representatives could, as early as this week, vote on the Bipartisan Congressional Trade Priorities and Accountability Act of 2015 (TPA), which would grant Congress the power to consider trade agreements with an up-or-down vote, without the possibility of offering amendments that could block a deal. Passage of TPA is crucial to conclude the ongoing Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) and Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (T-TIP) negotiations. The U.S. Senate recently voted 62-37 in favor of TPA, with 14 Democrats joining 48 Republicans to support the legislation.

The TPA bill also would establish concrete rules for U.S. trade negotiators to help the United States deliver strong, high-standard trade agreements that will boost American exports and create new economic opportunities and better jobs for American workers, manufacturers, farmers, ranchers and entrepreneurs. USDA earlier this year released data underscoring the benefits of TPP for U.S. agricultural exports. The data reveal significant growth opportunities for U.S. beef, pork, poultry and hides and skins exports resulting from increased market access and reduced tariffs under TPP. USDA also published state-specific information , detailing the ways in which TPP boosts food and agricultural exports and promotes job growth across all 50 states. Without TPA, other countries will continue to negotiate trade agreements, leaving U.S. exports at a competitive disadvantage, subject to both tariff and non-tariff barriers. Meanwhile, the absence of U.S. engagement from trade negotiations could weaken labor and environmental protections, as countries like China gain greater influence in determining trade rules.

The Meat Institute strongly supports the TPA bill and has been working closely with other industry and business associations to push for its passage. As the House moves to consider TPA, NAMI members interested in weighing in on this matter should contact their Representative to urge swift passage of the bill. To find your Representative, visit www.house.gov , and enter your zip code in the search function located at the top, right-hand corner of the site. For further assistance, contact NAMI Senior Vice President of Legislative Affairs Pete Thomson at pthomson@meatinstitute.org or 202/587-4235.

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