Senate Finance Committee Unanimously Passes Russian Trade Bill

The American Soybean Association (ASA) congratulates the Senate Finance Committee on its unanimous passage today of a draft bill that would establish permanent normal trade relations (PNTR) with Russia, the world’s sixth largest economy. ASA now encourages the Senate to take up the bill as quickly as possible, and calls on the House to move forward with a companion bill in order for the U.S. to capitalize on Russia’s accession package to the World Trade Organization (WTO). Importing more than $770 million in meat, poultry, egg and dairy products in 2011, Russia is an important market for the U.S. soy industry.

“Today’s unanimous passage of the draft bill establishing PNTR with Russia is a very encouraging move by the Senate Finance Committee, and we congratulate Committee Chairman Baucus and Ranking Member Hatch on their work to solidify U.S. business opportunities abroad,” said ASA President Steve Wellman, a soybean farmer from Syracuse, Neb. “The demand in Russia for poultry, pork, eggs, dairy products and other items that use soy inputs is already significant and continues to grow as the Russian economy grows. With today’s vote, the U.S. soy industry is one step closer to expanding an already beneficial and positive relationship with a valuable partner.”

ASA represents all U.S. soybean farmers on domestic and international issues of importance to the soybean industry. ASA’s advocacy efforts are made possible through the voluntary membership in ASA by more than 21,000 farmers in 31 states where soybeans are grown.

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