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Agriculture represents one of NAFTA’s biggest success stories. Since the agreement was enacted, U.S. food and agricultural exports to Canada and Mexico have more than quadrupled—growing from $8.9 billion in 1993 to over $38 billion in 2016. We also recognize that NAFTA is now over 20 years old and improvements to the agreement can be made. We stand ready to work with the Administration and Members of Congress to identify ways to modernize NAFTA while preserving the core benefits of the agreement that have greatly expanded U.S. food and agricultural trade within North America over the past two decades, with ripple effects that have benefitted the U.S. economy and created jobs.
The U.S. food and agriculture sector is heavily dependent on our current level of access to Mexico and Canada. NAFTA has played a significant role in boosting incomes for millions of U.S. farmers, ranchers, and allied manufacturers – and continues to provide important and profitable markets for our nation’s rural agriculture-based communities. As the Administration and Congress work together to identify constructive opportunities to modernize NAFTA, it is critical to preserve what has worked well in the current agreement as a “base line” and then build upon this base by expanding the market access, tariff, and non-tariff provisions.
NOPA looks forward to working with the Administration and Members of Congress to develop and implement a modernized trade policy that will promote and expand America’s food and agriculture producers’ and exporters’ interests in the important North American market.