05/15/2017The dairy industry is eager to work with U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer to protect and expand market access for U.S. dairy while addressing problematic Canadian dairy policies, the National Milk Producers Federation (NMPF) and the U.S. Dairy Export Council (USDEC) said following Lighthizer's Senate confirmation.
Lighthizer, a corporate lawyer and former deputy United States trade representative in the Reagan administration, took office yesterday (15 May) promising to help President Donald Trump "permanently" reverse what he described as America's "dangerous" trade policies.
President Donald Trump had been tossing around the idea of exiting the North America Free Trade Agreement before deciding to re-think and re-negotiate.
Mr. Trump vowed to revolutionize USA trade policy and has threatened to rip up Nafta and to apply tariffs or other measures to block imports or reduce the trade deficit.
At that meeting, Lighthizer will face many counterparts who were signatories to the Trans-Pacific Partnership, the 12-country free trade agreement from which Trump withdrew in January.
Officials would not be able to begin talks on NAFTA with Mexico and Canada until after the mandatory 90-day period of consultation with Congress. "As the Trump Administration's trade policy strategy develops, we want to build upon the USA government's past successes in pushing back against the EU's global GI agenda", said Tom Vilsack, president and CEO of USDEC. Mr. Trump's rhetoric on trade is often more aligned with the stances of Democratic lawmakers, many of whom are skeptical of USA trade agreements, but presidents have relied mostly on Republican votes to pass trade deals in Congress.