In this file:


·         Trump Vows to Fix Wisconsin Dairy Situation, Discusses Abolishing NAFTA

·         Reshaping NAFTA Could Benefit Mexico, Brazil and Argentina

·         Trump Says Canada Must Stop Protecting Dairy Farmers From U.S. Competition



Trump Vows to Fix Wisconsin Dairy Situation, Discusses Abolishing NAFTA


By: Anna-Lisa Laca, Farm Journal's MILK

April 18, 2017


This week President Trump made a stop in Wisconsin to discuss job creation. While he was there, he promised to support dairy farmers, fix the trade situation with Canada and make big changes to NAFTA.


“We’re using every tool at our disposal to restore the American dream,” he told the crowd at the Snap-On Inc. headquarters in Kenosha, Wisconsin.  “We’re going to stand up for our dairy farmers in Wisconsin.”


The President said he’s been reading about the situation and discussing it with advisors. He plans to demand fair trade with all of our trading partners, “and that includes Canada.”


“Because in Canada, some very unfair things have happened to our dairy farmers,” he said. “What has happened to you is very unfair.”


Trump promised a group of leaders including Gov. Scott Walker, several senators from Wisconsin and Speaker Ryan would join him to figure out the Canadian trade situation starting Tuesday...





Reshaping NAFTA Could Benefit Mexico, Brazil and Argentina

Much of Trump's protectionist rhetoric hinges on manufacturing, outsourcing of jobs and immigration — not agriculture.


By Cecilia Tortajada, By The Conversation

via U.S. News & World Report - April 18, 2017


Among other threats targeting Mexico during his election campaign, U.S. President Donald Trump harshly criticized the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), a 23-year-old tripartite deal that removed tariffs and significantly increased commerce between Canada, the United States and Mexico.


Renegotiation of the deal is likely to start late this year.


As Trump has pointed out, NAFTA contributed to a U.S. trade deficit with Mexico reaching US$63.2 billion last year. This is the country's fourth-largest trade deficit, after China, Japan and Germany. America's deficit with the other NAFTA nation, Canada, was slightly over US$11 billion in 2016.


But that's only part of the story. Remove cars and auto part imports, for example, and the U.S. deficit with Mexico virtually disappears.


Overall, NAFTA has been beneficial to Mexico, Canada and the U.S. alike. Since it was signed in 1994, foreign direct investments (FDI) in Mexico have averaged 2.6 percent of GDP (compared to 1 percent for two decades before NAFTA). At present, annual bilateral trade between the U.S. and Mexico is running at US$580 billion.


Agricultural gains


Much of Trump's outdated protectionist rhetoric hinges on manufacturing, outsourcing of jobs to Mexico and immigration. Agriculture – a key link between the two nations – does not seem to have entered his calculations.


Globalization may have contributed to manufacturing job losses in the U.S., but it has had significant benefits for the American agricultural sector. U.S. exports of agricultural products to Mexico have increased nearly fivefold since NAFTA was signed.


For the 2014–15 crop marketing year, U.S. corn production was 360 million metric tons, 13 percent of which was exported. Mexico accounted for 23 percent of these exports.


In 2016, Mexico imported US$17.9 billion in American agricultural products: US$2.6 billion in corn, US$1.5 billion in soybeans, US$1.3 billion in pork and US$1.2 billion in dairy products.


Around 98 percent of the corn that forms a staple of the Mexican diet comes from the U.S. Mexico also buys 7.8 percent of all U.S. pork production.


What has been good for U.S. farmers has actually hurt Mexican agriculture. Lulled by a steady supply of cheap U.S. farm products and low transportation costs, and assuming that the good times will continue, Mexico has not diversified its agricultural imports. It depends heavily on U.S. farmers to feed its people, endangering Mexico's long-term food security.


America losing ground ...


Mexico's brighter outlook ...


more, including links



Trump Says Canada Must Stop Protecting Dairy Farmers From U.S. Competition -- Update


By Paul Vieira, Dow Jones

via Morningstar - 4-18-17


 President Donald Trump revived his tough talk on the North American Free Trade Agreement Tuesday, warning Canada it must stop protecting its dairy farmers from U.S. competition.


Mr. Trump previously said he was looking at only "tweaking" parts of Nafta as they pertain to Canada. On Tuesday in Wisconsin, home to more than 1 million dairy cows, his comments about Canadian dairy suggested he might have something bigger in mind.


"In Canada, some very unfair things have happened to our dairy farmers, and others, and we are going to start working on that," Mr. Trump told the crowd in Kenosha in a speech to unveil his executive order that aims to put more teeth into decades-old "Buy American" and "Hire American" directives. "What's happened to you is very, very unfair. It's another typical one-sided deal against the U.S. and it's not going to be happening for long."


At the heart of objections from Mr. Trump, and House Speaker Paul Ryan -- whose home district is in Wisconsin -- is Canada's supply-management system. Under this scheme, prices for dairy products are set based on the average costs of production. Production is controlled through a regulated quota system, and competition is thwarted through tariffs.


"We are going to call Canada and we are going to say, 'What happened?,'" Mr. Trump said. "They might give us an answer but we are going to get the solution, not just the answer, because we know what the solution is."


In a letter issued Tuesday to Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker and New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo, Canada's chief envoy in Washington, David MacNaughton, said the country "does not accept the contention that Canada's dairy policies are the cause of financial loss for dairy farmers in the U.S." Mr. MacNaughton responded to the two governors because of a letter they sent a letter to Mr. Trump, urging him to address Canada's "protectionist" dairy policies.


Mr. MacNaughton said trade statistics indicate U.S. dairy exports to Canada rose by a robust 17% in 2016, adding Canada has not taken "any broader measures to limit [dairy] imports from the U.S."


U.S. unease has been brewing for years over the dairy restrictions, and was a stumbling block toward a final deal in the negotiations toward a Trans-Pacific Partnership pact...