Farm Bureau joins new trade coalition
The American Farm Bureau Federation joined the Business Roundtable, the National Association of Manufacturers and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce in Dallas on Jan. 24 to launch Trade For America (TFA), a new campaign to build support for modernizing trade agreements — including the North American Free Trade Agreement and the United States-Korea Free Trade Agreement (KORUS).
President Donald Trump’s administration has begun renegotiation of those two agreements, and Trump has threatened to withdraw from NAFTA.
TFA’s launch event featured a keynote address by House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Kevin Brady, R-Texas.
In his speech, Brady said, “We have to lay out the value of trade to that single mom who is walking through the grocery store looking for a variety of choices at the most affordable price to make sure that budget is stretching as far as it can. The freedom to trade is what gives that mom the choices — her choices — for what’s right and affordable for the family. Not the government’s choices, or even special interests.”
“Trade is a critical part of the American economy, and TFA will be dedicated to promoting the modernization of current trade agreements and its benefits for American workers and families,” said Bill Lane, executive director of Trade For America. “Our companies and farms rely on trade agreements to fuel demand for their products abroad, and these trade agreements keep our farm, manufacturing and services sectors competitive in the global market.”
“NAFTA has opened markets for America’s farmers and ranchers, and U.S. agricultural exports to Canada and Mexico have quadrupled under the agreement,” said Zippy Duvall, president of the American Farm Bureau Federation and a member of AFBF’s leadership committee. “The current negotiations should build on that success. Farm Bureau is pleased to work with TFA as well as Farmers for Free Trade and other collaborative efforts to engage farmers and leaders at the local, state and national levels, and deliver that message to Congress and the president.”