President Obama’s Trade Agenda: Unlocking Economic Opportunity for Americans
President Obama has made increasing American exports a centerpiece of his Middle Class Economics strategy because exports unlock economic opportunity for the American people. Grown-in-America agricultural exports are a crucial part of that effort, and support over a million jobs here at home.
The Office of the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) fights to identify and reduce obstacles faced by American farmers and ranchers when they work to sell their world-class agricultural products abroad.
In 2014, USTR and the U.S Department of Agriculture (USDA), with scientific support from U.S. regulatory agencies, resolved over 90 unwarranted barriers to export of safe and wholesome U.S. food and agricultural products.
Because of these successes, USTR has unlocked important export opportunities for American farmers and ranchers, which we will continue to do as we progress toward realizing President Obama’s trade agenda in order to promote economic growth, support more jobs, and strengthen the American Middle Class.
Below are several Sanitary and Phytosanitary (SPS) success stories from the SPS section of the 2015 National Trade Estimate Report:
- Apple Exports to China: In January 2015, China opened its market to all varieties of U.S. apples. With this agreement, the U.S. apple industry estimates that within two years, exports of U.S. apples to China will reach nearly $100 million annually.
- Beef Exports to Mexico: In April 2014, Mexico lifted restrictions on the import of U.S. beef and beef products from cattle over 30 months of age, ending the last of Mexico's beef restrictions related to bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE). USDA estimates the improved access will increase U.S. beef and beef product exports to Mexico by $50 million annually.
- Beef Exports to Vietnam: In February 2015, Vietnam agreed to remove remaining age restrictions on U.S. beef and beef products, thereby expanding access for U.S. beef and beef products. U.S. exporters, who sent $22 million in beef and beef products to Vietnam in 2014, are expected to take advantage of new opportunities in this growing market.
- Cattle Exports to Pakistan: Pakistan lifted its longstanding BSE ban on live cattle imports from the United States in July 2014. Industry sources believe that as many as 10,000 animals will be imported during the first year without the ban.
- Citrus Exports to China: In August 2014, China removed its ban on U.S. citrus, allowing American farmers to resume exports to China. California citrus exports to China were valued at $35 million annually before the ban was implemented in 2013.
- Corn and Dried Distiller Grains Exports to China: In December 2014, China approved a biotech corn trait, removing a key restriction to imports of corn and dried distillers grains (DDGs) from the United States. In 2013, China imported nearly $1 billion in U.S. corn and $1.5 billion in DDGs before trade was disrupted.
- Gelatin to European Union (EU): In March 2014, the EU introduced certification requirements for U.S. collagen and gelatin made from poultry and fish, making exports of these products to the EU possible for the first time.
- Pet Food to Panama: In June 2014, the United States reached agreement with Panama to open the Panamanian market to U.S. exports of pet food containing certain animal origin ingredients (mostly beef containing product). In 2014, the United States exported over $1.3 billion of pet food to the world, $8.7 million of which was to Panama.
- Pork to Chile: In February 2015, Chile agreed to remove trichinae testing and freezing requirements for U.S. pork. Chile is the United States twelfth largest export market for pork and pork products. U.S. pork and pork product exports to Chile totaled nearly $50 million in 2014, nearly nine times what the United States exported in 2009, and elimination of the requirements is expected to lead to increased exports of fresh and chilled pork to Chile.
- Pork to Malaysia: In September 2014, after three years of engagement, Malaysia approved the United States as having an equivalent food safety system for pork following a successful audit. As a result, U.S. pork is once again eligible for export to Malaysia. Prior to the ban, which Malaysia institute in 2011, U.S. producers exported over $1 million of pork to this growing market.
- Pork to Bahrain: In April 2014, Bahrain removed its ban on U.S. pork exports. As a result, pork exports to Bahrain in 2014 outpaced 2012 and 2013 reaching $65,000.
- Shellfish to China: In May 2014, China lifted its food safety restrictions on geoduck clams and other shellfish from the United States. This action facilitates U.S. exports to China valued at about $150 million a year.