The National Cattlemen's Beef Association is voicing strong support for the U.S. Proposal for Bold Reform in Global Agriculture, announced Monday by the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative.
"Cattle producers expect a significant reduction in global trade barriers to U.S. beef during the World Trade Organization agriculture negotiations," says NCBA Chief Economist Gregg Doud. "Gaining increased international market access for U.S. beef is our top trade priority."
The Sixth WTO Ministerial Conference is being held in Hong Kong December 13-18, 2005. NCBA's chief economist will be in attendance.
"U.S. Trade Representative Rob Portman has presented a bold plan for agriculture in preparation for the upcoming ministerial and NCBA supports this aggressive push to eliminate trade-distorting tariffs," says Doud. "We hope all countries participating in the WTO process can come together in Hong Kong and agree upon these bold reforms for agriculture."
The July 2004 Framework agreement for agriculture modalities calls for progressive tariff reductions and deeper cuts to high tariffs. Trade negotiators are working to finalize modalities in time for the Hong Kong ministerial.
"With the comprehensive package presented by Ambassador Portman, the United States is taking a leadership role in breaking the deadlock in multilateral agricultural talks and will be pushing for big steps in the Doha Round," says Doud.
For more information, a fact sheet and U.S. Proposal on Agriculture is available online at www.ustr.gov.