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FACT SHEET ON THE 2020 NATIONAL TRADE ESTIMATE: Fighting to Open Foreign Markets to American Agriculture

U.S. agriculture has posted an annual trade surplus for well over 50 years.  Agricultural exports support more than one million American jobs, with roughly 70 percent of these jobs in the non-farm sector, such as in processing and agricultural manufacturing.   Overall, U.S. farmers and ranchers export more than 20 percent of what they produce.  In 2019, agricultural domestic exports reached nearly $137 billion.  The Trump Administration will continue working to open new markets for safe, wholesome U.S. food and agricultural products to be enjoyed by consumers around the world.

U.S.-Japan Trade Agreement boosts access in 3rd largest agricultural export market

  • Under the U.S.-Japan Trade Agreement implemented on January 1, 2020, Japan has committed to provide substantial agricultural market access for the United States by either eliminating or phasing out most tariffs, enacting meaningful tariff reductions, or allowing a specific quantity of imports at a lower duty (generally zero).  Importantly, the tariff treatment for the products covered in this agreement with the United States will match the tariff treatment that Japan provides preferentially to countries in the CP-TPP agreement.
  • Out of the $14.1 billion in U.S. food and agricultural products imported by Japan in 2018, $5.2 billion was duty free.  Under this initial tariff agreement, Japan will eliminate or reduce tariffs on an additional $7.2 billion of U.S. food and agricultural products such as pork, beef, frozen poultry, wine, frozen potatoes, oranges, fresh cherries, cheese and whey, ethanol, egg products, and tomato paste.  Over 90 percent of U.S. food and agricultural imports into Japan will either be duty free or receive preferential tariff access under the Agreement.

Implementation of Agriculture-related Commitments under the Landmark U.S.-China Phase One Economic and Trade Agreement.

  • On February 14, 2020, the United States and China entered into an historic Agreement that further opens China’s food and agriculture market to American products.  The U.S.-China Agreement addresses structural barriers to trade and will support a dramatic expansion of U.S. food, agriculture, and seafood product exports, increase American farm and fishery income, generate more rural economic activity, and promote job growth.  As a result of this Agreement, China removed unwarranted restrictions on the imports of U.S. beef and beef products, poultry and poultry products, and pet food products.  China now allows imports for the first time of U.S. fresh potatoes and California nectarines.  China is streamlining its facility registration procedures to allow imports from more than 2,000 U.S. export facilities of various beef, pork, poultry and processed meat products, dairy and infant formula products, seafood, animal feed including fish meal, feed additives, and distillers dried grains.  All of these actions, along with additional commitments in the Agreement, will facilitate unprecedented levels of U.S. agricultural exports to China in the coming years.

Morocco Removes Barriers to U.S. Agriculture Exports

  • The United States and Morocco concluded negotiations in 2019 on export certificates for U.S. processed eggs and beef genetics to Morocco, opening Morocco’s market for these products.  The United States and Morocco also reached agreement on additional wheat tenders through the year, to improve U.S market access under the U.S.-Morocco FTA tariff-rate quotas. 

Expanded Access for Apples to South Africa

  • In March 2019, South Africa accepted U.S. proposals to lift its remaining restrictions on U.S. apples from Washington, Oregon, and Idaho, thus completely opening the market to U.S. apples from any state.

U.S. High Quality Beef Access Agreement Signed with EU

  • On August 2, 2019, USTR signed an agreement with the European Union that will guarantee access for U.S. high quality beef into the European Union.  The agreement will provide TRQ access starting at 18,500 MT annually in the first year, which will grow to 35,000 MT in year seven of the agreement.   Value of beef shipments in year seven are estimated at $420 million, compared to about $150 million in 2018.  The agreement entered into force on January 1, 2020.

U.S. Beef Gains Full Access to Japan

  • On May 17, 2019, USDA and Japan agreed on new terms and conditions that eliminate Japan’s longstanding restrictions on U.S. beef exports, paving the way for expanded sales to the United States’ largest global beef market.  USDA estimates that the expanded access could increase U.S. beef and beef products exports to Japan by up to $200 million annually.

Guatemala opens market for U.S. Table Eggs

  • In September 2019, USTR and USDA met with the Vice Minister of the Ministry of Agriculture  to discuss import access for table eggs.  On October 18, 2019, the Guatemalan Ministry of Agriculture issued administrative resolution 001-2019 confirming the import protocol for table eggs and opening that market to U.S. egg suppliers.

Tunisia Market Open to U.S. Beef, Poultry, and Eggs

  • In April 2019, the United States and Tunisia finalized U.S. export certificates to allow imports of U.S. beef, poultry, and egg products into Tunisia.  Initial estimates are that Tunisia would import $5-10 million of U.S. beef, poultry, and egg products. 

Vietnam Opens Market to U.S. Oranges

  • On October 1, 2019, the United States and Vietnam reached agreement on the phytosanitary conditions for U.S. oranges to be imported into Vietnam.  The value of U.S. orange exports to Vietnam prior to its halting U.S. access in 2016 ranged from $3 million to $10 million annually.

Ensuring Continuity of Processed Food and Beverage Trade with Saudi Arabia

  • In December 2019, following successful engagement by the Trump Administration, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia withdrew a measure requiring mandatory sugar limits for processed food and beverage products, which would have severely affected exports of U.S. exports to the Kingdom.  The decision follows an earlier confirmation by Saudi Arabia that its new salt and food labeling regulations remain voluntary.  Throughout 2019, the United States worked with a coalition of trading partners to challenge the evidence basis of these measures.   The United States exports over $400 million of processed food and beverage products to Saudi Arabia annually.

Expanded Access for U.S. Chipping Potatoes to Japan

  • The United States exports chipping potatoes to Japan from 16 states.  Japan previously permitted imports of U.S. chipping potatoes only during a six-month window.  Following technical work by both sides, Japan completed regulatory revisions in February 2020 to allow year-round access.

China Reopens Market to U.S. Poultry

  • On November 14, 2019, China lifted its unwarranted import ban on U.S. poultry that had been in place since an Avian influenza outbreak in December 2014.  The United States has been free of this disease since August 2017.  The United States exported over $500 million worth of poultry products to China in 2013 and anticipates 2020 shipments to China could exceed $1 billion due to major declines in China’s swine herd as a result of African Swine Fever.

Agreement with South Korea on Market Access for U.S. Rice

  • On December 30, 2019, the United States and South Korea signed an agreement on market access for U.S. rice, after five years of negotiations.  The agreement provides the greatest volume – 132,304 metric tons – of guaranteed rice market access the United States has enjoyed since South Korea’s accession to the WTO, with an annual value of approximately $110 million.  Additionally, the agreement provides U.S. suppliers with enhanced disciplines related to administration of the U.S. country specific quota.  The agreement entered into force on January 1, 2020.

Brazil Implements 20-Year + Unfulfilled WTO Wheat Tariff Rate Quota Concession

  • On November 12, 2019, Brazil published in its Diario Oficial the implementation of a duty-free TRQ for 750,000 metric tons of wheat imports.  The United States has long pressed Brazil to implement its WTO commitment, which went unfulfilled since Brazil’s accession to the WTO in 1995.  U.S. wheat exporters can now compete on a level playing field, including with imports of wheat from Argentina – Brazil’s MERCOSUR trade parent and largest wheat supplier.  U.S. industry expects that implementation of the TRQ will result in approximately $180 million worth of additional wheat exports to Brazil annually.