The EU and the UK can benefit from American agriculture
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President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump fires intelligence community inspector general who flagged Ukraine whistleblower complaint Trump organization has laid off over 1000 employees due to pandemic: report Trump invokes Defense Production Act to prevent export of surgical masks, gloves MORE continues to ensure our international trade deals are benefitting American farmers, ranchers and manufacturers. His administration has modernized trade agreements and ensured our trading partners follow internationally accepted rules. As a result, we have a bipartisan enactment of United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA), a tariff slashing deal with Japan, and an agreement from China to hold them accountable after decades of unfair practices.

American agriculture is a key driver of all three of these massive trade wins. As a direct result of USMCA, the United States-Japan Trade Agreement, and “phase one” of the United States-China trade deal, our farmers and ranchers will benefit from much-needed certainty, greatly expanded markets, and a level playing field with our competitors.

Agriculture is the No. 1 trade constituency in the United States. With more than 95 percent of the world’s customers living outside our borders, we must build on our achievements and seize more opportunities for agriculture trade. The European Union (EU) and the United Kingdom (UK) should be among our next objectives.

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The vast benefits of a trade deal between the United States and the EU are apparent for both of our economies only if we include agriculture. The Obama administration held extensive negotiations with the EU on what would have been known as the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership, or T-TIP. While we should have found easy agreement in many areas, this effort ultimately failed due to the EU’s protectionist policies.

The EU’s rejection of modern scientific standards, which allow us to safely and efficiently feed the world, is based on a misperception. Due to our advances in science, American grown food has never been safer. In order for the United States and the EU to move forward, the EU must reject rules that exclude products based solely on unfounded fear.

We may have greater opportunity with the UK’s departure from the EU. Before Brexit, the UK was required to negotiate as a part of the EU. After Brexit, we are optimistic they will have a more open-minded approach to science-based standards, bringing us even closer in our relationship.

Increased trade with Europe is a big opportunity. Together, we can create an environment that allows our economies to flourish. Negotiations will only be successful with inclusion of American agriculture, which is the best in the world for a reason. Should Europe agree to improved agricultural access and trade practices for U.S. farm products, we all will benefit.

Smith represents Nebraska’s 3rd District and is a member of the Ways and Means Committee. Davis represents the 13th District of Illinois and is a member of the Agriculture Committee.