Log in Subscribe Join Grass Roots Action

AMI Urges Swift Congressional Approval of Pending FTAs

Thursday, May 5, 2011

(American Meat Institute)

Citing “significant new market access opportunities for the foods we produce,” the American Meat Institute (AMI) and more than a dozen food manufacturing associations urged Congressional leaders to support action on a variety of trade initiatives, including swift approval and implementation of free trade agreements with Colombia, Panama and South Korea.

The groups stressed that time was of the essence for action on the trade agreements because the market share and access currently enjoyed is at stake due to the fact that Colombia, Panama and South Korea already have, or are pursuing, free trade pacts with some of our biggest economic competitors, such as the European Union and Canada. 

“Each of these pending agreements provides significant new market access opportunities for the foods we produce, including immediate duty-free access for many of our products and greatly improved tariff treatment for other products,” the groups noted in the letter. “We encourage Congress and the White House to take all necessary steps to ensure each of these agreements can be approved and implemented as soon as possible.”

The groups also took the opportunity to urge Congress to approve long-term extensions of the Andean Trade Preferences and Drug Eradication Act and the Generalized System of Preferences.  “These trade preference agreements enable U.S. businesses to globally source inputs and products, not readily available in the U.S., helping to reduce costs for businesses and consumers,” they wrote.  “Reauthorizing these agreements will go a long way to reducing the uncertainties many of our companies now face when attempting to engage international trade partners.” 

Last year AMI along with other interested parties derived estimates on the impact of full implementation of these three free trade agreements on U.S. exports and job creation.  Results of the impact study found that passage of the pending Colombian, South Korean, and Panamanian free trade agreements would represent an additional $2.3 billion in meat and poultry exports and the creation of 29,524 new jobs. 

For a copy of the full letter visit http://www.meatinstitute.org/ht/a/GetDocumentAction/i/68980.  

 share on facebook  share on twitter