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Governor, ND congressional delegation say trade deal needs to get done

Gov. Doug Burgum and North Dakota’s congressional delegation say the advancement of the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA), as agreed to by House of Representatives, needs to get done.

“As we’ve been saying during more than a year of delays in the House, the USMCA is a tremendous opportunity to benefit our farmers, ranchers, business owners and innovators with a modernized agreement that rebalances trade in favor of the United States and strengthens our relationship with our top two trading partners,” said Burgum. “We’re deeply grateful to the Trump administration for its tireless work on this agreement, and we urge House leadership to put it to a vote quickly so it can advance to the Senate for approval and be implemented as soon as possible. This deal will provide market certainty at a time of extreme hardship for our farmers and ranchers, who are among the most productive in the world and can compete with anyone on a level playing field.”

Canada and Mexico are North Dakota’s largest trading partners, accounting for nearly $5 billion in annual exports, according to Burgum’s office. In June, Burgum joined 26 other Republican governors in signing a letter urging Congress to ratify the USMCA.

Sen. John Hoeven said, “After being held up for more than a year in the House, it is time that House leadership moves this agreement quickly and gets it over to the Senate. With our farmers and ranchers challenged by severe weather and unjustified retaliatory tariffs, USMCA will provide important certainty regarding our two biggest trading partners and significant benefits for U.S. agriculture. Now that the House has agreed to advance USMCA, Congress should move quickly to get it in place for the good of our country.”

“Congratulations to President Trump and his Administration for working with allies in the content and adversaries across the aisle to strike this deal. Today’s agreement is long overdue. Advancing USMCA represents a win for North Dakota and the American people, and it will help our standing as we work to secure more trade deals around the world. I urge my colleagues to support it and to help make this deal become law,” said Sen. Kevin Cramer.

Congressman Kelly Armstrong said, “This is a huge win for North Dakota, a huge win for America, and a huge win for President Trump. My only question is why it took so long. Let’s get it done.”

Armstrong is serving his first term representing the state of North Dakota in the U.S. House of Representatives. He sits on the House Judiciary Committee, the House Oversight and Reform Committee, and the House Select Committee on the Climate Crisis.

According to Hoeven, the USMCA benefits North Dakota producers by:

® Eliminating Canada’s downgrade of U.S. wheat. Hoeven advocated for USMCA to eliminate Canada’s automatic downgrade of imported U.S. wheat to feed grade to help make certain that grading standards and services are non-discriminatory.

® Expands access to the Canadian market for other U.S. agriculture products such as poultry, eggs and dairy and eliminates Canada’s Class 6 and 7 dairy program.

® Requires 75 percent of auto content to be produced in North America in order to be exempt from tariffs, up from 62.5 percent.

® Makes needed modernizations on intellectual property, digital trade and financial services.

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