Trade Investigation & Retaliation Pt 1

Trade Investigation & Retaliation Pt 1

Bob Larson
Bob Larson
With today’s Fruit Grower Report, I’m Bob Larson. As the U.S. Trade Representative sets off to investigate what U.S. blueberry growers allege are unfair trade practices on the part of Mexico, Northwest tree fruit growers warn it could mean retaliation.

Northwest Horticultural Council president Mark Powers says they do have concerns…

POWERS … “I think our concern is that it depends on how the U.S. government decides to take action to protect domestic industries. But, if for what ever reason, their trading partner decides to retaliate, normally, the way that it’s been done is that they raise their tariffs on imports into their country.”

That, Powers says has the potential to be costly …

POWERS … “In Mexico’s case, generally, those tariffs have been 20% which is significant in terms of impacting our growers and consumers down there, their ability to purchase the fruit. So, that’s really the concern is retaliatory tariffs being put in place.”

The question, Powers says is what mechanism will they use to assist domestic producers facing increased imports …

POWERS … “There’s basically a 90-day window that the administration is operating under to come up with some answers to assist blueberry growers in one case with a Section 201 Action.”

Tune in tomorrow for more on this investigation and what it could mean for Washington apples and other tree fruit growers.

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