Final passage of the U.S.-Central America-Dominican Republic Free Trade Agreement (CAFTA-DR) is expected to be one of the largest trade policy discussions on Capitol Hill this year. With this in mind, the National Cattlemen's Beef Association (NCBA) has conducted a thorough economic analysis of this trade agreement for its producer-members.



In summary, the economic analysis illustrates that the CAFTA-DR is a very beneficial deal for the U.S. cattle industry. The agreement was officially negotiated down to a one-way deal for increased market access and reduced tariffs. Key points of the official NCBA economic analysis revealed:



* Overall, U.S. beef and beef variety meat exports to these nations could triple by 2015.



* The agreement will eliminate tariffs on U.S. beef exports to these nations.



* The details of this agreement basically level the playing field for U.S. beef producers.



* Beef and cattle trade between these nations will likely increase in the coming years.



* CAFTA exports to the U.S. will be directed by U.S. demand for lean (non-fed) beef.



"Expanding tariff-free export markets right now means growing our long-term earning potential and increasing the bottom line for our industry," explains Texas cattle producer and NCBA president Jim McAdams. "Especially with 60 percent of our export markets still closed to U.S. beef, this is a great time to be involved with CAFTA."



The economic analysis also offers a country-by-country breakdown, and is based upon information from various data sources including the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the United Nations' Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO). Go to: http://hill.beef.org/cafta for the full report.



Source: Association Release