In this file:


·         View From The Hill: US talks tough on trade with EU

·         U.S, Japan, EU discuss trade

·         Japan Opens Market to British Beef


·         EU trade chief says U.S. talks won’t include agriculture



View From The Hill: US talks tough on trade with EU


John Wilkes, Farmers Guardian (UK)

10 Jan 2019


AN open letter co-signed by 53 US agriculture and food organisations was sent to US trade representative Robert Lighthizer concerning the EU decision to exclude agriculture in future trade negotiations with the US, writes John Wilkes.


Some of those who signed the letter include The National Pork Producers Council, National Cattlemen’s Beef Association and the Farm Bureau.


Nick Giordano, vice-president and counsel for global government affairs on the National Pork Producers Council, independently voiced his industry’s frustration.


He said: “Brussels is miscalculating both the intention of this administration and the mood of the American public.”


He said Americans felt the EU lacked will for equality on trade with the US. Mr Giordano reiterated the Trump administration trade focus – ‘reciprocity’.


The agriculture coalition letter calls for any future US/EU trade deal to facilitate ‘an agreement that eliminates tariffs and quotas and removes all non-science based regulatory barriers’ for US produce.


The letter said: “This is not because European consumers do not want American products.


“It is because EU tariffs and non-science based regulations deny consumers a choice.”


Mr Giordano added: “We are talking about a rich block of nations that is persisting with protectionism. Bureaucrats in Brussels and throughout the EU are mouthing the mythology of the NGOs that US food is not safe and wholesome.”


Mr Giordano said EU recalcitrance was ‘elitist mumbo jumbo’ and ‘technology and competitiveness has given a broad swath of humankind a nice existence’.


On notice ...





U.S, Japan, EU discuss trade


By Larry Lee, Brownfield

January 9, 2019


The U.S. Trade Ambassador met with two important trade partners Wednesday.


EU Trade Commissioner Cecilia Malmstrom, Japanese Economy Minister Hiroshige Seko, and U.S. Ambassador Robert Lighthizer discussed shared objectives, but didn’t reach any new deals in Washington D.C.


The three leaders committed to maintain the effectiveness of World Trade Organization disciplines, including through some ongoing disputes.  They also agreed to cooperate on forced technology transfer and investment issues, including development of new rules by spring...





Japan Opens Market to British Beef


The Cattle Site

10 January 2019


UK - UK exporters are set to benefit from a multi-million pound boost as Japan today (10 January 2019) opened its market to imports of UK lamb and beef.


The agreement, signed during Prime Minister Abe’s visit to the UK, is estimated to be worth a total of £127 million over the first five years of access – approximately £75 million for beef and £52 million for lamb.


Japan, a major importer of beef with a growing demand for high quality lamb, has lifted its two-decade long ban on imports of these products with immediate effect.


The deal follows a year of global successes for UK exporters, which included China lifting its ban on UK beef, Taiwan opening its market to pork and India preparing to import UK sheep meat.


Farming Minister George Eustice said: "The opening of the Japanese market is an excellent result for beef and lamb producers across the UK and demonstrates confidence in our high standards of food and drink.


"As we enter a new era as a global exporter, unlocking this market marks a major step for future trading relationships and signals our commitment to supporting our food and drink industry to export more British produce."


The lifting of the ban follows a series of visits and negotiations between UK and Japanese officials, which culminated in an inspection of UK beef and lamb production systems in 2018, successfully hosted by Defra and the Animal and Plant Health Agency, the Food Standards Agency, Food Standards Scotland, DAERA, the Agriculture and Horticulture Development Board (AHDB) and the UK Export Certification Partnership.


Japan is renowned for its stringent food safety and import controls regime and opening this market is expected to send positive signals to other countries, particularly in Asia, regarding the safety of UK exports.


AHDB International Market Development Director Dr Phil Hadley said:





EU trade chief says U.S. talks won’t include agriculture


By Chris Prentice, Reuters

via GFM Network News/Glacier FarmMedia Feed/Canadian Cattlemen - January 9, 2019


Washington | Reuters — The European Union and United States have not yet agreed on the scope of trade negotiations, but the bloc will not include agriculture in the talks, its trade commissioner said on Wednesday.


U.S. President Donald Trump has sought better terms of trade with the EU, as well as China, Japan, Canada and Mexico. EU negotiators said they would discuss industrial goods including autos, but not agricultural products — a blow to U.S. farmers, who would like to boost access to the lucrative European market.


“We have made very clear agriculture will not be included,” Cecilia Malmstrom told a group of reporters on Wednesday, though she said the two sides had not yet agreed on that issue.


Malmstrom was speaking after meeting with U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer and ahead of a meeting with U.S. and Japanese leaders to discuss World Trade Organization reform this week.


USTR notified lawmakers in October of its plans to pursue the trade talks with the European Union. The EU was in the final stages of preparing its negotiating mandates for the talks, Malmström said.


In separate remarks to reporters on Wednesday, Republican Senator Chuck Grassley from Iowa said agriculture would need to be a part of the agreement to have support from lawmakers. Iowa is a top corn-producing state.


“I don’t know how anybody in Europe that wants a free trade agreement with us can expect it to get through the U.S. Senate if you don’t want to negotiate agriculture,” Grassley said.


Grassley and Malmstrom were to meet later that day, he said...