Listen Live

WASHINGTON, D.C.--The trade deal announced Monday between the U.S. and Japan may have a positive impact on Indiana’s farmers and ranchers, said Jessic Ditto, deputy communications director for the White House. The deal prioritized agriculture and makes it easier to sell America’s farm products and beef and pork in other countries.

The deal does not include cars or manufacturing.

“The Unites States and Japan agreed to expanding agricultural exports and digital trade,” said Ditto, a guest on Tony Katz and the Morning News. “We will boost American farmers, workers and businesses, expanding our agricultural market by eliminating and reducing tariffs on approximately $7.2 billion in U.S. ag exports.”

She said it will eliminate or significantly reduce tariffs on American beef, poultry, pork, wheat, cheese, ethanol and more.

“Over 90 percent of U.S. agriculture imports into Japan will be duty-free or receive preferential access,” said Ditto.

While Indiana’s beef and poultry farmers will be able to benefit from the new trade deal that partially replaces the Trans-Pacific Partnership, which Pres. Trump pulled the U.S. out of in 2017, our steel business is still hampered by increased tariffs that are part of the trade war.

Ditto promised the president is working on deals with Japan and other countries to alleviate that economic pain.

“These are two key sections, massive sections of what will be a larger agreement with the Japanese,” said Ditto. “But, obviously the president will continue to defend America’s auto workers with USMCA (The United States Mexico Canada Agreement).”

Ditto said she and the administration believes Congress should pass the agreement, which would mean more to the auto industry closer to the U.S.

While corn growers in Indiana will have the opportunity to benefit from decreased ethanol tariffs, dairy farmer don’t fare so well under the new agreement. The demand in Japan, for American butter and some milk products was eliminated when Australia and New Zealand moved their products into the market. Those products are some of the ten percent of ag products not included in the new agreement.

PHOTO: Scott Olson/Getty Images