Voices from Across the Country: It’s Time to Pass TPP | Trade Benefits America

Voices from Across the Country: It’s Time to Pass TPP

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From Alabama to Wyoming and every state in between, America’s business and agricultural leaders are speaking out about why Congress should approve the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) this year and what’s at stake.

Here’s what they’re saying:

David Hardin, Farmer & Member, American Farm Bureau Federation Trade Advisory Committee (Danville): “I manage my family’s farm near Danville, where we raise pigs, corn, soybeans and wheat. … TPP is important to our farm because it will boost demand for our pork and other U.S. farm and food products among nearly 500 million consumers in 11 countries across Asia and the Pacific region. Reducing tariffs and opening new markets for American agricultural products will increase farm income, generate rural economic activity and support local jobs. … I urge Congress to approve this important agreement as soon as possible.” Read more

John Schlageck, leading commentator on agriculture and rural Kansas (Salina): “The United States needs the Trans-Pacific Partnership to compete in world markets. The trade agreement with 11 other countries in the Pacific Rim — including Canada and Mexico — could eliminate 18,000 tariffs countries place on U.S. goods and services. Ratifying TPP could boost annual net farm income in the United States by $4.4 billion, compared to not approving the pact, according to American Farm Bureau Federation economic analysis.” Read more

Tess Winningham, CEO, Alignment Simple Solutions (Birmingham): The Trans-Pacific Partnership represents unparalleled opportunities for small businesses like mine and others across America. … Our products improve performance and lengthen tire life for safer and more effective transportation. We currently have five employees and we manufacture our products in-house, with components mostly made in the United States. …. I hope Congress sees the benefit it brings to small businesses like mine.” Read more

Eric Gregory, President, Kentucky Distillers’ Association (Frankfort): “International trade matters to Kentucky's economy. In 2014, the state exported over $27 billion in goods around the world. Kentucky bourbon and Tennessee whiskey made up more than $1 billion in exports, making it the largest export category among all U.S. distilled spirits. Free trade agreements are vital to the continued growth of Kentucky bourbon across the Asia-Pacific region and the rest of the world. … In 2014, half of Kentucky's exports were to TPP countries.” Read more

Rick Malinowski, Human Resources Manager, The Procter & Gamble Company (Auburn): “The Trans-Pacific Partnership agreement is critical to our company’s competitiveness because it addresses 21st century issues such as e-commerce, cross-border data flows, strong labor and environmental standards and unnecessary regulatory differences. In addition, TPP will serve as the first U.S. trade agreement with five of the member countries, including Japan, the world’s third largest economy, as well as Vietnam and Malaysia, two of P&G’s fast-growing emerging markets. The agreement will also upgrade our trading relations with long-time partners, such as Canada and Mexico.” Read more

Kevin Paap, Grain Producer, President, Minnesota Farm Bureau Federation & Chair, American Farm Bureau Federation Trade Advisory Committee (Cedar Rapids): “There are many new opportunities for expanded agricultural trade in the TPP agreement. … Along with tariff reductions and market access gains, the TPP makes important changes to trade rules for agriculture, addressing the non-tariff barriers that reduce trade. The most important of these measures are the commitment to base Sanitary and Phytosanitary (SPS) measures either on international standards or on science-based decision making. Also crucial to exporters is a rapid-response mechanism that will notify them, within seven days, when an inbound shipment is being restricted. This will help speed trade, reduce losses to perishable products and lower costs.” Read more

Bill Ritter & Roy Romer, former Colorado Governors & Ken Salazar, former U.S. Senator from Colorado (Denver):Through the TPP, Colorado will expand exports, support better-paying jobs, and stimulate small-business growth by reducing tariffs and improving international labor standards. And as a state rich with natural wonder and a long history of conservation, Colorado can be proud that the TPP includes the highest environmental standards of any trade agreement in history. … It’s a deal that will rewrite the rules to even the playing field in the future. Given a fair shot to compete, Colorado’s entrepreneurs, workers, and ranchers will succeed in a global marketplace, and Congress should pass the TPP. Read more

Expanding opportunities for America, including through trade agreements like the TPP, is good for business, good for the U.S. economy and good for U.S. jobs. For more information on the benefits of trade and the importance of the TPP to every state, click here.