Citing its importance to Kansas exports and the state’s economy, Governor Laura Kelly and Secretary of Agriculture Mike Beam expressed praise today for Congressional passage of the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA).

“This is an important and welcome development in Kansas, especially as our farmers and ranchers struggle to rebuild after an historic year of natural disasters,” Governor Kelly said. “With more than 95 percent of the world’s consumers living outside the United States, world markets offer tremendous growth opportunities for Kansas agriculture. USMCA will create enhanced export opportunities and help Kansans capitalize on the increased global demand for food and agriculture products.”

Secretary Beam also cited the positive impact for Kansas producers.

“This agreement is great news for Kansas, especially Kansas agriculture,” he said. “Mexico and Canada are consistently in the top three trade partners for Kansas so maintaining these strong relationships is critical for agricultural exports in the state.”

Canada and Mexico are Kansas’ first and third largest export markets for Kansas food and agricultural commodities, totaling nearly $1.58 billion in 2018 or 41.1% of our total trade.

USMCA is a significant development for Kansas farmers and ranchers. With a downturn in commodity prices, the agriculture sector is at a critical crossroads. The passage of USMCA provides Kansas farmers, ranchers and agribusinesses a degree of certainty during some uncertain times. It also instills confidence in the state’s top trade partners and neighbors that the U.S. can be counted on as reliable suppliers of food and agricultural commodities.

According to the office of U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue, under USMCA all food and agricultural products that have had zero tariffs under the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) will remain at zero tariffs. Since the original NAFTA did not eliminate all tariffs on agricultural trade between the United States and Canada, the USMCA will create new market access opportunities for United States exports to Canada of dairy, poultry, and eggs, and in exchange the United States will provide new access to Canada for some dairy, peanut, and a limited amount of sugar and sugar-containing products.