USTR Ag Negotiator McKalip on Expanding US Beef Trade

U.S. Agricultural Negotiator Doug McKalip recently highlighted U.S. efforts to expand foreign markets for American beef, facing unscientific trade barriers.

McKalip told the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association at the group’s CattleCon 24 event, knocking down non-tariff trade barriers takes face-to-face talks with some of the U.S.’ biggest trading partners. He said, “For example, Japan has greatly expanded their access for our products, and that’s a $2.3 billion market for US beef.”

McKalip says the U.S. Mexico Canada Agreement is another area where non-scientific trade barriers kept or continue to keep out U.S. product. McKalip, “There are, just over the course of the last year, about $6 billion that we were able to save by getting countries to remove those regulatory hurdles, and that makes a big difference for beef exporters, and keeps the trade moving.”

But the U.S. was forced to seek a second trade dispute settlement panel over Canada’s dairy import quotas, after accusing Ottawa of failing to comply with an initial ruling in the U.S.’s favor.

McKalip meantime, says other markets are prime targets for expansion. He says, “Southeast Asia is certainly a major player, the growing population, the growing middle class, that’s a place where we need to diversify and spend a lot of time developing those markets.”

While McKalip, recently in Africa, says there are over 30 countries there that are interested in buying US agricultural products. McKalip this week also plans to address state department of agriculture leaders at their association’s annual winter policy conference.