Former agriculture secretaries support Peru FTA
Four former secretaries of agriculture have expressed
their support for the US-Peru free trade agreement, now pending in Congress,
which could greatly improve pork, poultry and beef
In a joint letter sent to every member of Congress, Bob Bergland, John
Block, Dan Glickman and Clayton Yeutter expressed their 'strong support' for the
Peru Trade Promotion Agreement (PTPA)
, noting that it "will
achieve a more balanced bilateral relationship in the agricultural
The former USDA secretaries, who served in the Carter, Reagan, Clinton and
George H.W. Bush administrations, respectively, also mentioned the geopolitical
implications of the agreement: â€œThe United States must not turn its back on the
opportunity the PTPA and the other trade agreements (with Colombia and Panama)
offer to strengthen economic and political ties with Peru and other countries in
Under the Peru TPA, more than two-thirds of current US farm exports will
become duty-free immediately. Tariffs on most US farm products will be phased
out within 15 years, with all tariffs eliminated in 17 years.
In addition, Peru agreed to eliminate its price band system on trade with
the United States, and the United States and Peru resolved a number of
significant sanitary, phytosanitary and technical-standards issues that had
impeded or blocked US exports of beef, pork, poultry and rice.
The Peruvian government, for example, agreed in writing to recognise the
meat inspection system of the United States as equivalent to its own.
Peru agreement is expected to be the first of four pending free trade pacts to
see congressional action. Free trade agreements with Colombia, Panama and South
Korea also are pending in Congress.
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