Published online: Jan 13, 2011 Potato Storage, Potato Harvesting
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WASHINGTON, D.C.-The National Potato Council (NPC) applauds the release by the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) of a plan to resolve the current truck access dispute with Mexico that resulted in the imposition of retaliatory tariffs on frozen potato products and other domestic exports. The document is a starting point in the effort to resolve the ongoing trade dispute with Mexico that began more than 20 months ago.
In March 2009, and in response to a ruling by the World Trade Organization that the U.S. had violated the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) by not allowing Mexican trucks into U.S., the Mexican government instituted retaliatory tariffs on 108 products exported from the U.S. to Mexico at a value of $2.4 billion annually. Frozen french fries were included in the initial tariff at a rate of 20 percent. The tariff was reduced to 5 percent in August 2010. During that time, U.S. exports of frozen fries to Mexico have declined by nearly 50 percent and cost domestic potato growers nearly $60 million in lost revenue.