Trump Confirms NAFTA Renegotiation; China Ready for U.S. Beef
**The Trump administration informed Congress that it intends to officially begin renegotiating the North American Free Trade Agreement with Mexico and Canada.
The much-anticipated notification gives Congress a 90-day window to work with the U.S. Trade Representative, the Commerce Department and other agencies to help develop priorities in overhauling the pact with two of our largest trading partners.
Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross blamed NAFTA for the downturn in U.S. manufacturing and promised President Trump would turn that around.
**China appears ready to open up its growing market for U.S. beef imports, and this time, the “devilish details” seem to be finally nailed down.
While some skepticism surfaced when the U.S. Commerce Department announced two weeks ago that China would lift its 13-year-old ban on U.S. beef by July 16th, the two governments have reached preliminary agreements on some of the toughest sticking points preventing beef trade.
Following months of meetings in Washington and Beijing, the compromises address concerns about mad cow disease, while avoiding onerous regulations on U.S. cattle ranchers.
**Ag Secretary Sonny Perdue vigorously defended his reorganization plan for USDA, saying it would enable the department to move “quickly and nimbly” to address rural development needs.
Making his first appearance before lawmakers since taking office last month, Perdue eased concerns among House Ag Committee members about his proposal to create a new undersecretary for trade and eliminate the undersecretary for rural development.