U.S. soybean growers relived after U.S.-China trade tension eased

CHICAGO, May 23 (Xinhua) — Iowa Soybean Association (ISA) leaders are feeling relieved that trade tensions between China and the United States have eased and soybean demand could escalate, ISA’s official website reported on Wednesday.

Home to a large portion of America’s pork and grain products, Iowa is the second largest agricultural state after California. Its annual outputs of soybean ranks No. 2, only after Illinois state.

Last week, China and U.S. had economic and trade consultations in Washington.

According to a joint statement issued on Saturday, the two sides agreed to take effective measures to substantially decrease the U.S. trade deficit in goods with China, and China will significantly increase its purchase of U.S. products, especially agricultural and energy products.

“It makes me more optimistic that I will sell this year’s soybean crop at a profit,” said ISA President Bill Shipley. “Hopefully, the Chinese buyer will increase what they intended to buy and prices will increase even more.”

China is the world’s biggest buyer of U.S. soybeans, having imported a total of 27.5 million tons of them in 2017, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture. In money terms, it represents an approximately 14-billion-dollar business annually.

ISA CEO Kirk Leeds said he is encouraged by the efforts made by the Trump administration and China to work to resolve trade issues.

“Anything we can do to eliminate political posturing and rhetoric from business transactions is a good thing for soybean farmers and buyers,” Leeds said, “This is a step forward in the right direction; China and the U.S. need each other as trading partners.”