Round Four of NAFTA renegotiations have wrapped up in Arlington, VA but is the focus on these talks, or decisions on a trade deal with Korea costing the U.S. opportunities elsewhere?
That’s the concern of Vince Peterson, President of U.S. Wheat Associates.
“We pulled out of the Trans-Pacific Partnership in Asia. That’s an opportunity sitting out there that’s just ripe for our involvement. We essentially pulled out of the T-TIP, the European free trade agreement negotiations. That’s one that we could be missing out on.”
Without these deals, countries could be implementing high tariffs on U.S. commodities which could swing a sale from a U.S. producer to someone from another country.
Peterson said they are speaking out now because they can’t stand aside and let other countries beat the U.S. to the punch of trade.
“Quality is our niche. We’ve got five and, really, six classes of wheat that make almost every product that a customer needs to make. We can fit almost any wheat quality blend, customers mix, that they need and that’s where we need to be.”
Peterson said it’s important to change business models from looking at big bulk shipments to large countries to servicing as many countries as possible.