US promises seafood industry trade relief

US promises seafood industry trade relief A $530 million package has been announced to support US fishing businesses affected by overseas tariffs. Photo: NOAA

US Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue has announced today around $530 million in support for the US seafood industry and fishermen hit by retaliatory tariffs set by overseas governments.

Funding will be made available by the US Department of Agriculture (USDA), provided through the Seafood Trade Relief Program and funded through the Commodity Credit Corporation (CCC), administered by USDA’s Farm Service Agency (FSA).

Sonny Perdue described the move as “ clear message that the United States will no longer tolerate unfair trade practices.”

“The Seafood Trade Relief Program ensures fishermen and other US producers will not stand alone in facing unjustified retaliatory tariffs while President Trump continues working to solidify better and stronger trade deals around the globe.”

National Fisheries Institute president John Connolly commented that the move illustrates the Trump Administration’s ongoing focus on this important sector.

“Seafood starts in the oceans and making sure those Americans who work the water are supported is vital,” he said.

“It remains essential that the Administration and Congress understand the complexities of seafood. To get product from water to table all parts need to be considered. Without help for the processors and distributors in the middle of the supply chain, fishermen’s catch will simply sit on the dock of the bay.”

He added that the Seafood Trade Relief Program is a welcome effort that will help an important part of America’s commercial seafood industry, while reminding us all of the importance of a fully functioning value chain.

The Seafood Trade Relief Program funding will apply to atka mackerel, dungeness, king, snow and southern tanner crab, flounder, geoduck, goosefish, herring, lobster, Pacific cod, Pacific ocean perch, pollock, sablefish, salmon, sole, squid, tuna and turbot.

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