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Statement from Mike Strain, D.V.M., Commissioner, Louisiana Department of Agriculture and Forestry regarding announcement to lift trade barriers with Canada, Mexico and Japan 

May 20, 2019

President Trump’s announcements on Friday, May 17, 2019 regarding the agreement with Canada and Mexico to lift retaliatory tariffs on steel and aluminum is a huge victory for all farmers and citizens.

Further, the United States and Japan also announced an agreement which will eliminate Japan’s longstanding restrictions on U.S. beef that have the potential to expand our beef trade by an additional $200 million annually.

Canada and Mexico are our largest agricultural trading partners and opening beef and other markets with Japan, our farming sector will benefit immensely. Worldwide there is a growing shortage and disparity in the availability of protein and other commodities. It is imperative we normalize and stabilize world markets in order to ensure adequate supply for a growing world market.

Additionally, President Trump’s Tuesday, May 14 visit to Louisiana for the grand opening of Sempra Energy’s $10 billion Cameron Parish natural gas export facility marked a pivotal change in U.S. oil and gas policy. It’s one of the world’s largest export facilities for liquefied natural gas in Louisiana which is also home to Cheniere Energy’s Sabine Pass facility. These plants combined with two more under construction with an additional four facilities in the early stages of design and approval will place Louisiana at the forefront of America’s natural gas energy sector and provide thousands of direct and indirect jobs. It will also stimulate exploration and extraction of this abundant resource.

The proper utilization of our abundant natural and sustainable resources is vital to our economy and financial well-being. We must continue to lean forward and invest in our technology, infrastructure, and export capabilities and take advantage of every opportunity to expand markets and grow relationships with our trading partners.