Chinese tire struggle may influence U.S. pork exports

by Editor
Wednesday, September 09, 2009

An ad hoc coalition, which includes the National Pork Producers Council and 33 other food and agricultural organizations, sent a letter to U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk urging him to consider the consequences of actions he might recommend be taken against China over tires imported into the United States.

President Obama is expected to make by September 17 a decision on the findings of a U.S. International Trade Commission investigation of imports of certain car tires from China. The United Steelworkers filed a complaint with the ITC, claiming that a surge of Chinese tire imports had cost the union thousands of jobs. The ITC recommended a “safeguard action” of a 55 percent tariff on Chinese tires.

If the president accepts the ITC recommendation, the food and agricultural coalition is concerned that China will retaliate against U.S. products. Pork and soybeans, for example, have been mentioned as candidates for retaliation.

The coalition said in its letter that retaliatory actions by China against U.S. food and agricultural products would significantly affect U.S. farmers, ranchers and food companies at a time when many were facing serious financial problems.