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Chairman Roberts’ Statements on Administration’s Trade-Related Announcements

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator Pat Roberts, R-Kan., Chairman of the Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition, and Forestry, today released the following statements on trade-related announcements by the Trump Administration.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture today released additional details on its plan for up to $12 billion in assistance to farmers impacted by tariffs. 

“I appreciate Secretary Perdue’s efforts to provide temporary relief to our hard-working farmers who are being affected by tariffs,” Roberts said. “However, with low prices across the board, our farmers need long-term certainty. They want the predictability of export markets over aid. The announcement on a preliminary agreement with Mexico is a critical step in the right direction. We also need to quickly finish our work on a bipartisan Farm Bill that contains programs that provide much-needed certainty and predictability for farmers, ranchers, growers, and other stakeholders in rural America.” 

President Trump today announced that the U.S. and Mexico have reached a preliminary bilateral trade agreement. 

“I thank President Trump for his work to improve trade relations with one of our top trading partners,” Roberts said. “I am eager to learn more of the details of the new U.S.-Mexico trade deal. The value of U.S. agricultural exports to Mexico has increased by 305 percent since NAFTA entered into force; farmers and ranchers need to be able to rely on that important market. I’m hopeful the Administration will move quickly on securing a beneficial trade deal with Canada in the coming days.” 

From his post as both Chairman of the Agriculture Committee and as a senior member of the Finance Committee, which has jurisdiction on trade, Roberts has long been outspoken on the benefits of increased access to foreign markets for American farmers and ranchers – taking his concerns directly to President Trump, U.S. Trade Representative Bob Lighthizer, Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross, and other high-ranking officials in the Administration on numerous occasions.