The U.S. House of Representatives has passed the Peru Trade Promotion Agreement putting the U.S. pork industry one step closer to gaining 28 million potential new customers and increasing profits for U.S. pork producers, said the National Pork Producers Council in applauding today’s 285-132 vote.

NPPC urged the Senate to immediately take up and approve the agreement, which would reduce tariffs on all U.S. pork products to Peru. The country currently imposes duties as high as 25 percent on pork imports.

“This is a critical step toward passage of a trade deal that is of vital importance to U.S. pork producers,” says Jill Appell, NPPC president. “Now we need the Senate to quickly pass the PTPA. The sooner the Senate passes the agreement, the sooner the U.S. and Peruvian governments can implement the deal, which will generate new exports that flow directly to the bottom line of our producers.”

Iowa State University economist Dermot Hayes says, “when the PTPA is fully phased in, U.S. live hog prices will be 83 cents a head more than they would be in the absence of an agreement; producer profits will rise by 7 percent.

Under the trade pact, some pork products will receive unlimited duty-free access on implementation of the agreement and many others will get tariff reductions over a five-year period. All pork tariffs will be phased out in 10 years. Significant sanitary and technical issues also were resolved in the agreement with the Peruvian government agreeing to recognize the U.S. meat inspection system as equivalent to its system.

As NPPC continues to push for Senate approval of the Peru agreement they will also seek a vote early next year on the Colombia agreement, which would add $1.63 to the price producers received for each hog they market. Also awaiting consideration are deals with Panama and South Korea.

Source: NPPC