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Ag groups pleased with fertilizer tariff decision

Ag groups pleased with fertilizer tariff decision

The International Trade Commission voted not to place tariffs on some UAN for fertilizer

By Diego Flammini
Staff Writer

Organizations representing U.S. farmers are pleased with a recent decision that helps keep money in farmers’ pockets.

On July 18, the International Trade Commission (ITC) voted unanimously against placing anti-dumping tariffs on urea ammonium nitrate (UAN) solutions from Russia and Trinidad and Tobago.

Had the ITC voted the other way, U.S. farmers would’ve had to pay additional costs for fertilizer originating in those countries.

Farmers are already paying more for inputs and more price increases would challenge them further.

“Skyrocketing supply costs are already forcing some farmers into the red. The cost of fertilizer increased more than 60% from 2021 to 2022 and that’s not sustainable,” Zippy Duvall, president of the American Farm Bureau Federation, said in a statement. “We appreciate the commission’s recognition that adding unnecessary import costs would have made it difficult for farmers to access an affordable supply of this crucial nutrient at a time when America’s farmers are being called on to meet growing demand here at home and abroad.”

“This comes as a welcome relief,” National Corn Growers Association President Chris Edgington said in a statement. “We have been sounding the alarms and telling the ITC commissioners that tariffs will drive up input prices to even more unaffordable levels for farmers and cripple our supply. I am so glad they listened.”

The ITC’s ruling isn’t viewed as a unanimous victory for all those in the ag sector.

In June 2021, CF Industries filed a petition with the ITC requesting it place tariffs on UAN from Russia and Trinidad and Tobago “due to the harm the domestic UAN industry has experienced from dumped and unfairly subsidized UAN important from Russia and Trinidad.”

CF Industries wanted the tariffs to help restore fairness in the fertilizer industry and ensure American farmers have a reliable source of fertilizers.

In June 2022, the U.S. Department of Commerce found UAN imports from Russia are sold at less than fair value at rates ranging from 8.16 percent to 122.93 percent.

And UAN imports from Trinidad were dumped at a rate of 111.71 percent.

The ITC’s decision will hurt the U.S. fertilizer sector, said Tony Will, president and CEO of CF Industries.

“Unfortunately, this outcome will perpetuate an unlevel playing field for a domestic industry that has invested billions of dollars in the U.S. to ensure American farmers have a reliable source of UAN fertilizer,” he said in a statement.

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