WASHINGTON — A Chinese state media agency reported on Sept. 13 that US pork and soybeans will be exempt from tariffs and trade agreements.
President Donald Trump said on Sept. 11 that the US would delay its tariff increases of $250 billion until Oct. 15.
....on October 1st, we have agreed, as a gesture of good will, to move the increased Tariffs on 250 Billion Dollars worth of goods (25% to 30%), from October 1st to October 15th.— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) September 11, 2019
The National Pork Producers Council (NPPC) released a statement on the news from China citing the importance of the largest export market to US producers.
“If media reports are accurate, this is a most welcome development,” said NPPC President David Herring. “The Chinese have placed punitive tariffs of 60 percent on most US pork products, bringing the effective tariff rate on most US pork to 72 percent.”
According to Dermot Hayes, Ph.D., an economist at Iowa State Univ., the Chinese retaliation of US pork has shaved $8 off the price of every hog sold in the US for more than year. He also citied that most competing countries face a 12 percent tariff. Currently, the US is facing a 62 percent tariff.
“When you consider that China is the largest producer and consumer of pork in the world, the importance of this market to US pork producers is clear,” Herring said. “US pork exports could single handedly make a huge dent in the trade imbalance with China. We are hopeful that this apparent gesture of goodwill by China leads not only to more sales of US pork, but that it contributes to a resolution of US-China trade restrictions.”
China continues to have difficulties with pork production due to the ongoing outbreak of African Swine Fever.