Ag Secretary Sonny Perdue says the USDA will take several steps to assist farmers suffering from trade damage due to unjust trade retaliation. USDA will authorize up to $12 billion in programs, which is in line with the estimated $11 billion impact of the retaliatory tariffs on U.S. agricultural goods. These programs will help producers to meet the costs of disrupted markets. A disproportionate number of the retaliatory tariffs were aimed directly at agricultural products. Perdue says this is a short-term solution that will allow the President more time to work on long-term trade deals to benefit agriculture and the U.S. economy. “The President promised to have the backs of every American farmer and he knows the importance of keeping our rural economy strong,” Perdue says. “USDA will not stand by while our agricultural producers bear the brunt of unfriendly tariffs enacted by foreign nations. The programs we’re announcing today help ensure our nation’s agriculture continues to feed the world.” The programs that USDA will use to assist American farmers include the Market Facilitation Program, develop a Food Purchase and Distribution Program, and a Trade Promotion Program. The aid doesn’t require congressional approval but would be provided through the Commodity Credit Corporation.
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