Published: Wed, July 25, 2018
Finance | By Cynthia Curry

Trump assures farmers he has their back amid mounting trade war

Trump assures farmers he has their back amid mounting trade war

The USDA projected earlier this month that average soybean prices paid to farmers would fall 75 cents to US$9.25 a bushel next year. The U.S. and European allies have been at odds over the president's tariffs on steel imports and are meeting as the trade dispute threatens to spread to automobile production.

Tariffs have irked farmers, a crucial voting bloc for President Donald Trump.

The president is meeting with European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker on Wednesday.

The affected countries have in turn targeted USA agricultural products, including soybeans, dairy, meat, produce and liquor.

"This is a short-term solution that will give President Trump and his administration time to work on long-term trade deals that benefit agriculture and all sectors of the economy", US Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue said.

Checking out a speedboat, a fighter jet and a giant industrial magnet parked on the White House driveway, President Donald Trump showcased an array of "Made in America" products Monday as his administration pushes back aggressively against critics who say his punishing tariffs on imported goods threaten to harm the US economy. But the country has been pursuing other avenues as trade tensions with the U.S. have flared.

Price increases would vary by product, ranging anywhere from a few cents on a can of beer or soup to around $6,000 on a family vehicle, if the administration moves forward with auto-specific tariffs it has threatened.

In the unlikely event that Trump agrees, Juncker will suggest that significant makers of cars and vehicle parts, including Japan and South Korea, negotiate a multi-lateral agreement with the aim of reducing tariffs on those products to zero. "Ryan's comments come just hours after Trump tweeted that tariffs were the "greatest" and viewed America as a "'piggy bank" that was being "robbed".

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Trump has already put taxes on imported steel and aluminum, saying they pose a threat to US national security, an argument that enrages staunch USA allies such as the European Union and Canada.

But, Colorado's U.S. Sen. When the conditions were struck, the US favored a 25 percent tariff on European trucks and SUVs. House Minority Whip Steny Hoyer said Tuesday that Trump's tariff policies were not "well-thought-out" and the effects were a "mixed bag" of positive and negative effects. Though the Republican said they would happily welcome the political benefits that will come from the farm aid plan, they anxious the damage may already be done with growers whose farm prices and commodity prices have shrunk in recent months.

Politicians Tuesday announced that $12 billion would go back to American farmers as form of tariff relief. The No. 2-ranked House Democrat says he is pleased jobs will be created but stressed the financial impacts USA farmers face. "The aspect of reinvigorating our steel industry is a good objective, but the way the that should have been done is with targeted actions, not scattershot actions". The administration also sought to signal that they have the best interests of farmers in mind.

During a Monday event at the White House featuring American-made goods, Trump displayed a green hat that read, "Make Our Farmers Great Again".

Trump has vowed to force worldwide trading partners to bend to his will as he seeks to renegotiate a series of trade deals he has long argued hurt American workers.

"The president's going to have to say more than 'I like the farmers and I support the farmers,"' he said. "Without prompt action, we could lose farmers and the rural businesses they support and depend on at an even more rapid rate". Canada, China and Mexico are the three biggest buyers of US farm goods, accounting for 43 percent of purchases in 2017.

"I think it's more on the American farmer".

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