tv NAFTA and Agricultural Policy CSPAN August 16, 2017 11:10pm-12:04am EDT
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illustrating why the provision is important. >> as canada, mexico and the u.s. begin a round of talks to renegotiate nafta, the presidents of organizations representing farmers and ranchers held a news conference to voice support for the international trade agreement. from the national press club in washington, d.c., this is 50 minutes. >> good afternoon. i'm will roger, director of policy of education at the american farm bureau federation. today negotiators from three member states of nafta will begin renegotiating a treaty that is more than 20 years old. much is at stake particularly foring a culture. today we have with us the three
heads of the largest farm organizations in canada, mexico and the united states. they are from our right zippy epaul from the american bureau federation. coe de la tt and bos vega. these men will give their views with the modernization of nafta for no matter what you heard there are great deal that our three nations can agree upon. the three will give their opening remarks. we'll have a signing to ambassador light heiser and secretary guajardo. after that, we will open the floor to questions. if you have a question here at the press club please wait if for microphone so that people on the phone can hear the question that you are asking.
president duvall, the floor is yours. >> thank you for attending today. this is a very important day for americanning a culture, canadianing a culture and mexicanning a culture. -- mexican agriculture. i want to thank mr. vega in help in joining us to renegotiate the trade nafta. american farmers value our trade relationships with our two closest neighbors, canada, mexico are more than just close, they are our number one and our umber three customers of the united states,ing a culture product -- agriculture products and they are the number two of
agriculture imports. clearly our trade relations are important to all of us on the stage here. we have a vital interest in helping our neighbors make improvement -- negotiators make improvements but also to do no harm to the gains that we have gained in nafta. we are committed to preserving gains. nding upon the nafta continues to be a success story for north american farmers and ranchers. we all want timely enforcement or trade agreements and prompt resolutions to disputes that might arise in this new mo determinization -- mo determinization. u.s. exports will total $137 billion this year. the forecast of agriculture imports is $114.5 billion giving
us a trade surplus in agriculture products and yes, i aid a surplus, of $22.5. for all the criticisms in our trade deal, we in agriculture want to know that our trade deals and open markets are largely beneficial to american farmers and ranchers and to the communities that we live in and do our business in to raise our families. and focus on the common goals that we have. the three groups that are here today agree that trade helps all of our citizens and all our
farmers an ranch ners our countries and we look forward to a better agreement for the future that is modernize for modern agriculture. thank you. ill? will: next, we have ron bonnet resident of the canadian agriculture department. ron: thank you, will. and thank you to the american farm bureau for the hospitality. we had the opportunity to have lunch before this press conference and i think it gave us an opportunity to exchange views on where things are going and i think between mr. duvall think we la vega, i realized that there was a lot of common ground that we can build
on. we heard the opening remarks on the renegotiation of nafta. and i i think it's interesting in the opening comments we heard the world agriculture a number of times. with our leadership in all three countries recognizing that agriculture is important, we the farm leaders of all three countries must insist that the voices of farmers must be heard. i thank the press for coming out. i think it is an issue of great importance to the economies of all three countries. c.f.a., american farm bureau and c.n.a. in mexico decided several weeks ago that it would be appropriate for us to try and find that common ground that we had when we moved forward. and we have prepared a joint statement and subsequent letter to our negotiators based on the principle of do no harm. for agriculture, nothing has
been good. if we look at the changes since 1994, trade between our three countries has grown exponentially. we must build on this success. $56 anada, u.s., we have billion in reciprocal trade. with mexico and canada we have $4.2 billion and mexico has a slight surplus. canada is the top export market for 29 u.s. states. as farm leaders we have outlined common ground for a path forward. there are five areas that we agreed on. one is the focus on increased and improved regulatory alignment. the secondary is improving the flow of goods at border crossing. the third is further alignment of sanitary measures and that's a fancy term that' human, animal
and plant issues. the elimination of nonscience-based areas to trade is another area we need to concentrate on and then adapting the agreement to technology advances that have been made since 1994. 1994, the internet, digital economies those types of things weren't even thought ofment in closing, i would like to heck what was said this morning. we are neighbors, partners and friends. we have a relationship based on trust and understanding. agriculture has been a success and remember, do no harm. thank you. ill: and finally the president nal.co nacio
>> [speaking in spanish] president of the press and members of c.n.a. [speaking in spanish] we have the privilege of our secretaries of agriculture mr. ose calsada. >> tony purdue from the united states and lawrence from canada. [speaking in spanish] >> they have been sending very good signals of work together as a team. [speaking in spanish] >> first of all at the georgia meeting the three of them were present. [speaking in spanish]
-- d recently in meri dbs merida, mexico were both of them together. [speaking in spanish] today our sector is a great example of construction and understandable. [speaking in spanish] >> of the vital activity of the primary production. [speaking in spanish] in a cordiality and respect biance as today we are expressing ourselves the president of the agriculture sector. [speaking in spanish] >> i want to remind you that the ational council of agriculture -- [speaking in spanish] importssents 80% of the and 75% of exports.
[speaking in spanish] >> as well as one mill yonl growers and producers -- [speaking in spanish] >> recognizing the united states and canada as great partners complimentary. [speaking in spanish] >> i belong -- i am the third generation of agriculture growers and we always have been an american or canadian commercial partner. [speaking in spanish] >> we understand that the primary production is vital toward the economy of the two countries. [speaking in spanish] >> we are the commercial block more successful of the world. [speaking in spanish] >> and we will be together more competitive. [speaking in spanish] >> making more stronger the ties in north america.
[speaking in spanish] we can go out to have new markets in asia and europe. [speaking in spanish] >> the national council of agriculture it's in favor of the be a ial balance to pickup truck of more competitivity. [speaking in spanish] >> and the national council of agriculture will be looking always to maintain the competitiveness in the markets. speaking in spanish] >> we are committed to look for better markets access into the three countries.
>> the protocols -- [speaking in spanish] > should be treated as a bi-product -- [speaking in spanish] >> in order in their specialties and the risk of each one. [speaking in spanish] >> the modernization of nafta make stronger the trade in the region. [speaking in spanish] >> and contribute to the development of the partners. [speaking in spanish] >> i celebrate that the three presidents of the private sectors of agriculture in the
three countries -- [speaking in spanish] >> we are together taking care f main concerns of the sector. [speaking in spanish] >> and we have clear from the point of view of mexico and we have been talking with our government -- speaking in spanish] >> that we have not agreed to exchange coin for any other economic activity. [speaking in spanish] >> i'm very thankful for all you ing here especially with the tightness of your schedules. [speaking in spanish] >> and you can count on mexico
take the pen. >> with that, we can open up the floor to questions. please go to the mic so that the people on the floor can hear you . who has the microphone? go ahead. >> yeah, phillip brasher. just to start off, i would like get the reaction to bob lightheiser's opening statement which he said although nafta had benefited u.s. farmers and border communities that it fundamentally failed many, many americans and that it would have to have major improvement and tweaking and updating a few chapters would not be acceptable. my concerns does that raise in terms of possibly trade-offs to get those changes that he's talking about? >> well, of course, it concerns us that we would have that mentioned up front. you know, our stand is that we
do no harm. this has been a good trade treaty for north american agriculture from mexico to canada. and we want to make sure that we have that -- our voice heard loud and clear. that we don't want to harm the gains that we have had in it. the president of the united states is my president too and he's president of all the ranchers and farmers who played a major role to get him elected and he promised to make trade treaties fair for all american people and i don't see him doing harm to this treaty that has been good for agriculture. >> just on that statement too, let's say -- while there may be some concern there were news in agriculture that it was singled out that agriculture was a shining example of how the success could work. and i think back to mr. duvall's
statement of do no harm, i think we have to ensure that that message is there loud and clear. and i think in part, that is why the three of us decided very quickly that we needed to make a statement to the negotiators that we have got something that is working -- don't do something in the negotiations that is going to undermine that. that is going to undermine not only farmers and ranchers, but also all of the jobs that are related to farming and ranching in all three countries. spanish] >> i happened to be at the press conference today in the morning. i was very glad to hear the ambassador mentioned several times agriculture, because that
means the importance we have with products like corn, soy, recognizing the importance of the sector for the united states. and i think that is a very good signal from the beginning for the coming negotiations of our countries. >> yeah, you in the back. mic? >> please identify your organization. from bloomberg radio. mention was made of improving regulation on the basis of science and abandoning other
regulations of barriers to trade that are not technical. would you elaborate on what you mean by that? i get the impression from the american side that you all would he better off if trump had never raised this issue in the first place. would you tell me about that? if i may, i will pass the microphone to my colleague to our ranks me as former president of the press club. >> i was recently in florida talking about some of the concerns and a have a different perspective on nafta. i'm very concerned and i direct this question about some of the concerns florida growers have about mexican shipments, labor rates, wages in mexico, food safety standards. for mr. duvall, i'm wondering if there's anything you can do to address those concerns without
putting bad precedents for u.s. farmers? i'm wondering what areas you see as under discussion that would address some of the concerns of florida growers. that's like eight questions, good luck. >> i will speak to the first gentleman. >> the first john was talking about science-based and technical barriers. that can be a number of things. harmonizing regulations to the approval of rides and herbicides and making sure the scientific processes are the same so we don't have to go through a separate series of hoops on the approval of all types processes. you talk about technical barriers. one of the things we discussed at lunch was the idea of inspection services. if there is an inspection
approved in one country, one inspection should suffice. it should not have to be reinspected every time it moves across the border. all of those types of things will streamline costs for producers and for the numerous products. that goes back to the theory of building on what has been working and trying to streamline a lot of the process on regulation and technical air so if we get closer to harmonization across all three countries. i hope that answers your western. >> division of mexico is we want fair trade with fair rules of commerce.
the topic in the transferring weight and based on science. we are agreed that our congress maintains the 19th chapter in the controversial solution. in the labor topics, we consider each country should the addressing their own things. mexico has an agreement with the international organization of work and is working very hard in all of this processes. >> when it comes to the farmers in florida, the northeastern dairy farmers and the upper
midwest, of course we have some concerns. what could i do to help change that mark out three of these organizations have very good communications with our government. my communication is mostly through the secretary's office and we will keep him informed where we think there are issues that we can try to solve. it comes down to deciding that we are a region of these three countries and for us to sound together as a strong region is important to show the rest of the world and it will be important in future negotiations and other trade treaties. we have to set our feelings aside and tell each other that we have problems and we do have a problem in florida and we do a problem in the northeast and we do have a problem in certain areas.
then let's have some rules around the trade treaty that we have swift decisions on how we solve these problems because time means money to our farmers. we cannot afford for them to be in limbo when there's a problem. we have to bind together as a region and discuss what our problems are with each other and find solutions and do it quickly. >> i will go into an analysis state-by-state. i'm interested in having their own particular -- in the global vision of the trade between mexico, the united states, and canada, mexico has winners and losers.
the cilia, the corn, and that means in mexico, rice, there's a serious problem of competition. mexico is sending salads, some meat and we are receiving a very important volume of meat and grains. >> you mentioned chapter 19 dispute resolution. i think with any trade agreement, it is almost mandatory that there be a mechanism in place to deal with these disputes and having a trade agreement that does not have some type of format for how you resolve dispute is creating a trade agreement that does not have any enforceability.
from our perspective and the canadian government perspective, dispute resolution is critical as it goes forward. >> i'm penny starr with right martin news. on one of the lists here, you talk about the improved flow at border crossings. can you talk about how that it's in with border security in your concerns about that? >> i can start from a canadian perspective. i live very close to the u.s. border. one of the issues we find is hold ups at the border, particularly with heritable products, a delay of several hours and you go from having a very valuable cargo to one that
is worth nothing. finding ways to get a preapproved clearance, pre-inspection, electronic filing, using all the new technology so when the truck hits the border, everyone is preapproved. recognizing in the world -- the world you live in, you have to have clearance. i was at the airport and i saw people going through the line that preapproved and they go through a lot faster than the people that do not have an access card, so a similar type of approach to goods being transported across the border as we are doing at border entries for people. >> to speak to the immigration issue, that's something i'm not an expert in and neither is my organization we would leave that to the experts to handle that, but can speak to the issue that was just brought up and it was important that when we deliver our products to our neighbors that come in very good quality
and that quality is definitely determined by how quickly and swiftly it can get through the borders. >> i believe we have the commitment of national security. and breakthroughs in the field, the orient certification, transparency on the process and expedited supervision at the border, and -- and that would give us the security to
contribute to the safety. >> i understand we have some questions on the phone. if you could that the speaker on, name and organization, please? >> a first question comes from carl with reuters. please proceed with your question. >> hello and thank you for taking my call. are you concerned about the trump administration's fixation on reducing manufacturing trade deficits and how that might hurt have benefitedat nafta? >> of course, we carry that concern and first question was close to that, we have a concern but our approaches do no harm on
what we have gained to this point. we want to do no harm to that and if possible, make it even better for all three countries agriculture wise. we understand there are manufacturing problems and we will leave that up experts to have that conversation and continue to impress on them that we do not want them to use us as a trading tool and do harm to the agriculture sector in all three countries. >> the only thing i would add is the fact that by and large, agriculture trade is much more balanced than manufacturing trade is. we don't want to see agriculture sacrificed because of some other sector. we've done a good job taking advantage of opportunities, so why should we be penalized for that? in mexico, we know there is
an obsession about the deficit. but we want to say mexico represents only 8% of the deficit. that percentage, we assume -- we can say at least 70% is from north american companies that are exporting to the united states. an automobile made in mexico has only 40% of components made in the region. and other parties have an integration of 8% to 12%.
in the sector, we have a lot of canadian and united states companies investing in mexico. they are exporting from mexico to their own countries and in the change value, in any case of the exporters, into the destination country, either canada or the united states, there is an important commercial partner for investors or shareholders. >> thank you. >> can we hold on for a question from the floor? >> i'm catherine with politico.
both the u.s. and mexico have said they want to finish negotiations as soon as possible, ideally before the end of the year because of upcoming elections in both countries. could you comment on whether that's a realistic timeline? also, if you could comment on those longer negotiations, if they are drawn out, how it would impact agriculture markets. thank you. >> mexico has two plans. the first one is to conclude renegotiation of the agreement as soon as possible.
without affecting the sense of the free trade agreement. the ideal would be we would be finished at the end of january. but if not, we will wait until the timing and essence of the trade will come. in the understanding that no it will continue operating, we will wait. wait. but we say in a very few case, in the very un-probable case, that the united states decides to quit nafta, mexico will work
with the omc rules. wto. >> canada doesn't have any elections, so i'm sort of caught in the middle. however one of the things i think is it's going to be a to the negotiators to determine what the timeframe is going to be as to when these are finalized. but our role is to ensure the concerns of farmers and ranchers are heard as we go through the negotiations. one comment i would make is making sure as the negotiators go through this that any discussions that take place in the public builds on confidence of a trading relationship and not undermine that confidence because every day we have farmers and ranchers shipping products back and forth across the border, trading with each
other and anything that undermines that could really hurt the economy and hurt long-term planning or how we move ahead. >> as you know, the farm economy is not really good in america right now and uncertainty makes everyone on farmland very uncomfortable. it is our desire and wish to make sure the modernization of this trade treaty happens quickly and let's get our discussions behind us so we can bring some certainty to the markets and have them plant the next crop next year and be prepared for that. like i said earlier, time is money to farmers and having uncertainty is not helpful and this is going to play a major role in those areas as we move forward.
we highly encourage them to edit done and get done fast and we are looking for the successful modernization of this great treaty. >> operator, maybe we could take another question from those on the phone line. >> our next question coming from jeff with cromwell ag net work. please proceed with your question. >> thank you for taking her call today for top is the commonality discovered under the transpacific partnership before the u.s. withdrew, should that be the baseline for the beginning of negotiations or is that the epitome we might expect?
>> we consider have big advances that we can consider for the modernization of nafta. we know that 11 countries left. for both to continue with the agreement, for mexico was very important because to coordinate nafta with canada and the united states. >> you mentioned about tpp being a base. i'm not sure i would call it a base but it outlines the scope of a modern trade agreement.
the idea of using it as a base for the market, the market dynamics have changed, so it would be very difficult to accept that as a base going forward for top i think talking about the scope and some of the issues that were discussed might be something that is looked at but i can't it being used as a base. >> there is a lot of areas tpp was interested and excited about, so hopefully there will be bits and pieces that could be used, but thinking the treaty would be used as a race, i don't think that will be what would happen, but we hope they pick up on the modernization of the treaty and ring it to the modernization of nafta. >> more questions from the floor?
>> a follow-up question on tpp for the u.s. the president with draw from tvp and i think u.s. farmers are offended -- missing out on the benefits you are supposed to get. it's the response on the possible u.s. and japan fta and what the trump administration is thinking about? >> obviously i haven't spoken directly to him, but hearing him talk about future trade treating -- future trade treaties i think is very possible. we are hoping other countries are interested in having those conversations and i would hope japan would be open to that discussion of having a bilateral treaty between your country and u.s. >> operator, do we have anyone
still on the phone who wants to ask a question? >> we do have a question coming from ellen ferguson from cq roll call. please proceed with your question. >> thank you all for having the conference. i wanted to ask about supply management. that has been a big concern particularly for u.s. dairy farmers. that seems to be an area it says it will defend. do you see -- is there a potential candidate might accept some changes to supply management? >> i think our government has been very clear stating they are going to defend supply management and we stand behind that. one of the things when we talk about adding together a joint
statement, we try to concentrate on those areas where we have a joint interest. we try to concentrate on areas and each country has issues we can bring forward. if we spent our time talking about these, all it would be is a family fight. the three countries operate in very close relationships and we're going to have differences. i don't think it's bad to have differences and a healthy discussion around them. >> we have time for one more question. >> in terms of doing no harm, from what you know of the negotiating edition of the u.s. government would do harm short of withdrawing from the agreement and would you be better off if trump had never raised the issue?
>> american agriculture is not seeking renegotiation or the modernization of this treaty but once the election started and the rhetoric started around it and we have a new president that has that desire, then of course we look for opportunities in the challenge for us. hopefully mr. trump lives of to his word and at the and of this negotiation, the farmers and ranchers across north america and all three of our country's even better off than we are today. we are going to go into this very optimistic and say if he accomplishes what he wants to do, our farmers will have certainty in the market and certainty where they will be exporting to and certainty and what they will be planning and
producing next year. we have the opportunity to make something that is good and good in the past and make it better. >> if you start swapping off the gains we have gained an american agriculture for some other business sector, it could be harmful to american agriculture, or if we put pressure into another country that may make a decision to take their business elsewhere, it could do harm to our farmers. let's don't try to fix what's not broken and the agricultural fees of nafta is not totally broken but it could take some attention in certain areas. >> i think when the discussion opened, i think ourselves in the canadian government realizes the
agreement has been in place since 1994. a lot has changed. that's why when the three of our organizations got together and started identifying areas where we could make improvements, we are very specific about the types of things that would improve trade flows, harmonize regulations and those types of things that likely should be a dated. when you go that long, it needs a look at, but our advice has been focused very much on those five recommendations and if those are achieved, it will likely make things better for farmers in all three countries . >> when president donald trump wees position on january 20, celebrated 133 organizations of the farm bureau.
to maintain nafta because from 1994 to this date, the commerce between the countries will have been increased 0.3 times. that process has been the same process in mexico and canada. we are the most competitive area and without agreement, we are going to make more stronger asia, especially china, and we will decrease the competitive in north america. >> for the final question, is
there anyone left on the phone? with that, thank you for coming. it has been a pleasure. you have my contact information. let us know if we can do anything to help. >> thank you very much. [chatter] >> sunday night on p1 day, realty are politics -- washington bureau chief recounts events in u.s. history that happened on specific dates throughout the year in his book "on this date." >> one of the reaction i got a lot was august 28. it is the martin luther king story. i don't write about the speech. i write about a kid who was
railroaded for murder that day that he didn't do, and how that speech played an interesting role in him eventually being exonerated. when the case was reopened by a crusading new york times reporter, his alibi checked out. the reason is his 10 or 11 african-american friends remember exactly where they were, and that he was with them because it was the martin luther king speech and they were watching it. >> sunday night at 8:00 eastern on c-span's q&a. >> this weekend on book tv, saturday at chemical a.m. eastern we are live at the mississippi book festival with "a turningthors on part of the american war in vietnam." author of "lincoln's war secretary." and " a man and his president."
sunday at 9:00 p.m. eastern, mil o e annapolis is our guest on afterwards. >> trolling is about sweeping away all concerns about what people will say or think about you, safe in the knowledge that if you tell the truth and do it in an entertaining way, that you will win way more fans than the media has made enemies for you. >> then at 10:00 p.m., james o'keefe, founder and resident of project veritas discusses his book. >> it is very hard to break through to the mainstream media these days. we had this big story on cnn with camera video. cnn didn't mention a word about it. the notion of getting on the front page of the new york times or getting anderson cooper to talk about you, or getting the number one trending thing on twitter -- this is what we call breaking through.
>> for more of this we can schedule go to book tv.org. >> on monday a total solar eclipse will be visible across the u.s. in a path stretching from oregon to south carolina. for normal on the phenomenon we talked to a astronomer from cleansing university. -- clemson university. an adjunctenberg, professor of physics and astronomy joins us now. that is where he will be watching on monday, the total solar eclipse. it will be the 27th one he has observed in person, by far the most of anyone alive today. for the viewers out there who will be witnessing this total solar eclipse for the first time, what is your favorite moment of a total solar eclipse, and what are you looking forward to on monday? donald: what happens as