A trade team from Mexico is in Nebraska this week to meet with Governor Pete Ricketts, corn industry officials and U.S. Grains Council representatives.
Nebraska Corn Growers Association president Dan Wesely says it’s important to talk to Mexican officials directly with the recent NAFTA developments because they’re a top market for U.S. and Nebraska corn.
“They get a little reassurance of how important we think trade is,” Wesely says. “Just getting a personal visit is always better than trying to do it over the phone or doing a webinar, something like that.”
He says Nebraska sells a host of ag commodities to Mexico. “Corn and cattle and hogs and soybeans, too,” Wesely says. “I think pork at one time was 25% of their product goes, is exported.”
Wesely says it should help that Robert Lighthizer is being confirmed as U.S. Trade Representative and that the USDA is adding an Undersecretary for Trade to improve trade relations with Mexico and other important partners.
“Getting people in place and giving them the chance to do what they do best,” Wesely says. “It’s just a little more comforting to know people are out there and we can make some progress. It just seems like we’re on hold until we get people in place.”
Nebraska exports almost $300-million of corn to Mexico every year.
By Jerry Oster, WNAX, Yankton