Agriculture Prominent in U.S. and China Discussions


U.S. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross gave testimony to a Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Thursday, during which trade with China was a key topic. Ross said he hopes to reduce the differences between the two countries, in which hundreds of billions of dollars in commerce are at stake in a trade war.

Ross led a delegation to Beijing a week ago to begin the effort to iron out those differences but told the congressional subcommittee Thursday that remaining differences are large. Ross says U.S. officials presented a list of requested changes in China’s trade policies, going “product by product and quantity by quantity.” Agricultural goods featured prominently in the discussions. China responded with their own trade requests.

Ross says President Trump has asked the Ag Department to figure out ways to help minimize the impact of Chinese tariffs going into effect on American agricultural products. “We’re well aware that it’s unfair to ask one industry to bear the brunt of retaliation to help other parts of the economy,” Ross says. “We’ll do our level best to resolve that problem.”