“The U.S. Korean Free Trade Agreement (KORUS), if ratified, would be the biggest shot in the arm to the meat and poultry industry since the passage of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) in 1994,” says AMI President and CEO J. Patrick Boyle.

Boyle notes that for the pork industry, passage of the KORUS will mean that by the time tariffs are phased out, Korea will be the largest U.S. export market, doubling the amount of pork we currently sell to our largest foreign customer, Japan. In the U.S., this would result in an additional $687 million worth of pork exports, creating an additional 9,161 U.S. jobs.

For the poultry industry, Boyle says it’s an equally appealing picture. Passage of the KORUS could triple U.S poultry exports to Korea to more than $150 million, or 125,000 tons annually. Over the first 10 years of this agreement, an additional $58 million in exports are expected to be generated along with the creation of 687 new American jobs.

For the beef industry, which is still working to regain overseas markets that were lost when Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy (BSE) was first discovered in the U.S. in 2003, Boyle said the KORUS represents a promise of hope. Passage and full implementation of the KORUS would mean an additional $1.3 billion in beef exports, creating an additional 17,000 badly needed American jobs.

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