WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Bill Cassidy, M.D. (R-LA) today advocated on behalf of Louisiana rice and shrimp producers during the Senate Finance Committee nomination hearing for Katherine Tai to be United States Trade Representative (USTR). During the hearing, Cassidy requested her assistance in addressing the following:
“A couple of issues important to my state,” said Dr. Cassidy. “We’d love to sell a lot of Louisiana rice in the UK, turns out they love it. The issue, of course, is 25% countervailing tariffs as is caught up in other aspects of our trade war. So just to encourage that be resolved ASAP so that folks back home that work in rice mills have fuller employment. Also a parochial issue back home is shrimp. India is sending a lot of shrimp here. They heavily subsidize – I’m told – they’re shrimpers and then the EU is refusing to accept it over phytosanitary concerns. So we’re getting subsidized shrimp refused elsewhere because of phytosanitary concerns putting my folks out of business. If they want to compete on price, that’s fine, but make sure it’s clean, doesn’t have antibiotics, etc. but also that it’s not unfairly subsidized.”
Cassidy also asked Tai about efforts to combat the rising tide of counterfeit goods and the lack of Chinese enforcement of labor and environmental standards in existing treaties. They discussed the need to work on new, creative tools to end the exploitation of cumbersome trade processes.
Click HERE to watch the full exchange.