North American state and provincial ag leaders discuss USMCA implementation

The US Mexico Canada Agreement went into effect in July and this week state and provincial agricultural leaders from the three countries discussed progress on implementing the trade deal.

National Association of State Departments of Agriculture President Ryan Quarles led the U.S. Delegation for the virtual Tri-National Agricultural Accord.  

“For the US Delegation, our main goal was a smooth but momentous implementation of the new provisions of the USMCA including a framework for agriculture biotechnology as well as the establishment of governance committees,” he says. “So, a lot of our time this week was spent brainstorming and also communicating to our federal government liaisons the status as well as what these new framework committees would look like. We’re still in the early implementation of the trade deal but we’re also mindful of the work to be done, especially with technical issues.”

Manitoba Minister of Agriculture and Resource Development Blaine Pedersen says that committee structure allows the countries to work together to address issues.

“It certainly opens it up to be able to have that state and provincial involvement in what are considered to be national issues,” he says.

Quarles, Pedersen, and Hidalgo Secretary of Agriculture Carlos Muniz Rodriguez virtually signed and issued a joint statement highlighting the strength of agriculture in the three countries and the collaboration the state and provincial ag leaders have.

The leaders also discussed COVID-19 response; prevention, surveillance, and rapid response to African Swine Fever; and the future of agriculture through innovation including gene editing.

The 30th Tri-National Ag Accord will be hosted by NASDA October 25-27, 2021, in Arlington, Virginia.

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