Nebraska has signed an agricultural trade agreement with Taiwan that could eventually total $472 million.
Lt. Gov. Lavon Heidemann made the announcement during a conference call from Taipei, Taiwan where he is leading a trade mission.
“It is my pleasure to be able to announce that today we have signed an agreement with the Taiwanese officials for up to $472 million in sales of Nebraska corn, soybeans, and wheat.”
A letter of intent has been signed by Heidemann and Nebraska Agriculture Director Greg Ibach at a ceremony in Taipei. In it, representatives of the Taiwan Flour Mills Association, Taiwan Feed Industry Association, and the Taiwan Vegetable Oil Manufacturers Association pledge to purchase between $401 and $472 million of Nebraska commodities over a two-year period.
The agreement specifies the intent to purchase 800,000 to 1 million metric tons of corn, worth up to $220 million; between 200,000 and 220,000 metric tons of soybeans, valued as high as $132 million; and 500,000 to 600,000 metric tons of wheat, with a value as high as $120 million.
It is the third trade agreement Nebraska has reached with Taiwan recently. Nebraska reached trade deals with Taiwan in 2007 and 2010.
Ibach, who joined Heidemann on the conference call with Nebraska reporters this morning, said those on the trade mission have seen the impact those previous trade missions have had.
“We actually had the chance to be at one of the companies today that imports beef and also has a restaurant,” Ibach said. “And, we were able to see that they listed beef from Nebraska, USA on their menu at that restaurant.”
Members of the delegation have kept busy in Taiwan. They met with Taiwan Vice President Wu Den-yih, held meetings with officials in the Ministry of Economic Affairs, the Counsel of Agriculture, and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. They signed a proclamation marking the 30th anniversary of the Nebraska-Taiwan sister-state relationship during a ceremony there.
Taiwan ranks as Nebraska’s 13th largest export market with $94 million in imports last year. It ranked 10th in agricultural exports.
Heidemann will lead the trade mission to Japan tomorrow where it will participate in the annual Midwest U.S.-Japan Association Conference in Tokyo.