Congressman Ralph Abraham wrote to the United States Department of Agriculture urging that the USDA take all steps possible to protect farmers during the current trade negotiations between the United States and China.
The United States has taken a number of actions aimed at reducing the trade deficit between the U.S. and China while also holding China accountable for its unfair market influence and disregard for American intellectual property. The Chinese responded with tariffs that could have negative consequences on American agriculture.
Congressman Abraham said be believed China unfairly targeted U.S. farmers with tariffs because farmers are one of America's greatest assets. He said he agreed with President Trump on his desire to hold China accountable for its trade practices. "I encourage his administration to focus on achievable trade goals while doing everything within its power to ensure that our farmers will not be forced to bear the burden of retaliatory trade actions," said Dr. Abraham. Abraham is Louisiana's only member to represent the state on the Agriculture Committee.
Last Tuesday, the United States Trade Representative had proposed 25 percent tariffs on more than 1,300 Chinese industrial and other products from flat-panel televisions to electronic components. China shot back 11 hours later with a list of proposed duties on $50 billion of American imports, including soybeans, aircraft, cars, beef and chemicals.
The President did not provide a reason for the statement or say whether China had indicated it planned to drop its tariffs.