National Cotton Council applauds U.S. trade negotiations

The United States trade negotiators resisted pressure on cotton concessions during the 10th World Trade Organization (WTO) Ministerial Conference in Nairobi, Kenya, garnering praise from the National Cotton Council.

"U.S. negotiators held firm with respect to any cotton specific outcomes, ensuring that the United States would not face any new restrictions on cotton domestic support," National Cotton Council Chairman Sledge Taylor said.

As a result of the conference, the decision was made to continue dedicated discussions with the WTO for better transparency and complete notifications of subsidies by all countries. All developed countries must provide duty-free/quota-free access for cotton and cotton-related products to the least-developed countries, which the United States has already done. This means that within the next three years, all agricultural export subsidies must be eliminated with some exception for transportation and marketing subsides until 2023.

"While the overall outcome of the Ministerial is generally positive, there continues to be unwarranted pressure and focus on U.S. cotton policy by some WTO members," Taylor said. "The NCC will continue to utilize the WTO forum to advance the recognition that the global cotton market has evolved significantly since 2003, when cotton was initially singled out as a separate agenda item at the Cancun WTO ministerial. Over the past decade, U.S. cotton farmers have experienced a decline in their safety net, while the surge in Asian polyester production has reshaped global fiber markets."

Finally, the use of export credits will be leveled to the same terms the United States currently uses, making it more equal for the global community.

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National Cotton Council of America 7193 Goodlett Farms Parkway Cordova, TN - 38016

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