DES MOINES — Iowa Senator Chuck Grassley hopes negotiations this fall will end the trade war between the U-S and China.
President Trump recently announced the next round of tariffs on Chinese products would be delayed until December 15th in order to help the American consumer. Grassley says the delay will do little to help Iowa farmers. What would help, he says, is for China to live up to the promises China’s president made to Trump during the G-20 summit in Osaka, Japan earlier this summer. “They were both showing good faith that they were going to get back to the negotiating table,” Grassley says. “There was two days of negotiations. There wasn’t anything accomplished, so that’s why the president took on some tariffs. Then, he backed off on half of them and China hasn’t bought the grain they said they were going to buy.”
While saying there’s no “immediate hope” for farmers hurt by the tariffs, Grassley remains optimistic negotiations in September will lead to a new trade pact. “I hope that we can get China to quit cheating,” he says, “by stealing our intellectual secrets, having to give them our technology to do business there, and all those things we thought we had major breakthroughs with China on about May 1st — and then they backed off. Then, of course, we didn’t negotiate in May, June or July, and now we’re back to the negotiating table.”
Despite the recent tariffs, Grassley believes the farming community will still support Trump. “The farmers are willing to put up with the fact that some president has to stop China from cheating on the international trade,” said Grassley.
China is the world’s largest consumer of pork products and Iowa is the United States’ largest pork producer.