The president called the deal a ‘tremendous breakthrough’ for U.S. farmers
By Diego Flammini
Surrounded by about 400 guests which included American farmers on the south lawn of the White House, President Trump signed the United States-Mexico-Canada-Agreement (USMCA) into law on Wednesday morning.
His signature means Canada is the last country to finalize the deal. Mexico’s government has already ratified the agreement and Canada is planning to start its ratification process soon.
The USMCA will take effect 90 days after all three countries have ratified the trilateral agreement.
The president touted the deal’s benefits for multiple sectors including ag.
“This agreement is a tremendous breakthrough for American agriculture,” the president said before signing the deal. “Canada will finally provide greater access for American dairy. Poultry exports to Canada are expected to rise by at least 50 per cent, and egg exports could increase by 500 per cent.”
Canada will also provide U.S. wheat with an official grade. Prior to USMCA, any U.S. wheat imported to Canada automatically received a feed grade.
Representatives from the wheat and dairy sectors are pleased to see the president finalize the trade agreement.
“This is a tremendous victory for American dairy farmers,” Brody Stapel, a dairy farmer from Cedar Grove, Wis., and president of Edge Dairy Farmer Cooperative, said in a statement Wednesday. “In preserving the well-established markets of Mexico and Canada, and providing opportunities for even more exports there, USMCA will help bring the long-term economic stability necessary for farmers to not only survive but thrive.”
“USMCA will bring some guarantee for the unpredictable climate of farming,” Ben Scholz, president of the National Association of Wheat Growers, said in a Jan. 29 release. “Trade deals create markets which provide stability for growers, making the profession more attractive to future generations.”
Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue is optimistic about how the agreement can benefit the U.S. ag sector.
“USMCA is critical for America’s farmers and ranchers, who will now have even more market access to our neighbors to the north and the south. I am excited to see the economic benefits of this agreement increase the prosperity of all Americans, especially those living in rural America,” he said in a statement.
President Trump signs the USMCA around the 45-minute mark of the video.