Dec 11, 2019  |  Today's News |  ICGA |  Exports |  Legislation & Regulation

U.S. Secretary Nancy Pelosi announced Tuesday, December 10 that House Democrats have struck a deal between Mexico, Canada and our administration. After many efforts from our organization, it is rewarding to hear the advancement of this trade deal which would help provide additional markets for exporting our corn products while ensuring success for our nation’s economy, labor laws, pharmaceutical regulations and protections for the environment. All these issues needed to be addressed to guarantee passage through the House.

This announcement is celebrated industry wide and statements have been released by leaders and organizations across the country urging its passage.

President of the Illinois Corn Growers Association Bill Leigh said, “In January 2019, the Illinois Corn Growers Association listed ratification of the U.S. Mexico Canada Agreement (USMCA) for trade as a top legislative priority.  Mexico and Canada are top markets for U.S. corn and corn co-products.  A trade agreement between our countries that allows for free access to both markets is one of the most immediate ways to help Illinois corn farmers struggling through a very rough crop year. ICGA would urge quick passage of the USMCA.”

Congressperson Cheri Bustos said, “Today’s announcement on the USMCA represents real progress for our workers, our farmers and our country. During the past year, I have toured my district, speaking with farmers, labor organizers and local stakeholders about the importance of striking a strong trade agreement. I convened a meeting between Speaker Nancy Pelosi and the Illinois Farm Bureau and Farmers for Free Trade in order to ensure that the concerns of our hardworking farmers were brought to the table. Finally, I have worked to encourage my colleagues in Congress and the Administration to reach a deal that would win the support of a broad set of stakeholders and address the needs and concerns of labor, environmental organization and rural America. Today’s announcement is a historic step forward to provide much needed trade certainty. I am optimistic that our country will be able to move forward with a strong trade agreement.

Congressperson Rodney Davis said, "This is great news for American workers and consumers. The modernized trade deal will build on the economic growth we have seen and create new, good-paying jobs. I am especially pleased with the expansion of the dairy market for American farmers and ranchers, as well as the provisions to incentivize more auto manufacturing and higher manufacturing wages. I applaud the Trump Administration for their diligent work in securing a better deal for the American people and I look forward to moving this process forward."

U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue said, “USMCA is a big win for American workers and the economy, especially for our farmers and ranchers. The agreement improves virtually every component of the old NAFTA, and the agriculture industry stands to gain significantly,” said Secretary Perdue. “President Trump and Ambassador Lighthizer are laying the foundation for a stronger farm economy through USMCA and I thank them for all their hard work and perseverance to get the agreement across the finish line. While I am very encouraged by today’s breakthrough, we must not lose sight – the House and Senate need to work diligently to pass USMCA by Christmas.”

CEO of Growth Energy, the nation’s largest ethanol association, Emily Skor said, “This is welcomed news for U.S agriculture and biofuel producers across North America. We have a rich history of trade with Mexico and Canada, and the USMCA strengthens that vital economic bond between our three nations. This was no easy feat, so we thank our champions in Congress and the administration for their tireless efforts to secure its approval and for pursuing much-needed economic opportunities for rural Americans.”

National Corn Growers Association President Kevin Ross said, “NCGA’s top legislative priority in 2019 has been passing USMCA. Today’s announcement brings us one step closer to ratifying this important agreement and securing the future of our trading relationship with Mexico and Canada, the top export market for U.S. corn farmers. It’s been a brutal year for many farmers who really need the certainty this would provide for agricultural trade.”

The passage of USMCA is critical to help the grain industry. It is encouraging to see so many organizations taking a stance to support it.