As weather and trade issues make 2019 a difficult year for many Indiana farmers, a U.S. agriculture official with strong ties to the state says the proposed replacement for the North American Free Trade Agreement would bring something the farm economy desperately needs: stability. “We think it’s going to be a great deal for all of our farmers, and particularly (Indiana) with our proximity to Canada,” said Ted McKinney, a former Director of the Indiana State Department of Agriculture who is currently serving as U.S. Undersecretary of Agriculture for Trade and Foreign Agricultural Affairs.
McKinney says the United States-Canada-Mexico Agreement will provide greater market access for Hoosier ag products, including the state’s substantial dairy industry.
The USMCA was signed by President Trump, Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau in November 2018 during the G20 Summit in Buenos Aires.
So far, Mexico is the only country to ratify the deal.
As intense lobbying continues on Capitol Hill and throughout the nation, McKinney says the clock is ticking for Congress to take action. “It’s got to pass, I think, by the end of the year, because next year you get into the funny season of politics and we cannot wait that long, it’s got to be this year.”