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Agricultur​e groups could oppose TPP on Japan tariff demands

American Farm Bureau Federation logo

”Japan – a rich, developed country – is demanding special treatment for its agricultural sector. We consider an agreement that includes such special treatment for Japan to be unacceptable,” wrote the American Farm Bureau Federation and 16 other organizations.

A coalition of the major agricultural organizations said they’re likely to oppose a final TPP trade agreement if Japan doesn’t agree to comprehensive trade liberalization, including elimination of tariffs on virtually all U.S. agricultural products.

In a letter sent Dec. 18 to U.S. Trade Representative Michael Froman, the 17 groups said the unwillingness of Japanese negotiators to present a comprehensive offer on agricultural products is threatening to undermine the trade talks.

“In previous negotiations, the United States has demanded and received from developing country trading partners full and comprehensive liberalization in the agricultural sector,” the letter stated. “Yet in the TPP negotiations, Japan – a rich, developed country – is demanding special treatment for its agricultural sector. We consider an agreement that includes such special treatment for Japan to be unacceptable.”

The ag coalition letter was signed by the American Farm Bureau Federation, American Soybean Assn., National Assn. of Wheat Growers, National Corn Growers Assn., National Milk Producers Federation, National Oilseed Processors Assn., U.S. Grains Council, U.S. Wheat Associates, USA Rice Federation and others.

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