Washington, DC (May 11, 2017) – The Sweetener Users Association (SUA) today issued the following statement on the U.S. Senate’s bipartisan confirmation of Robert Lighthizer to serve as the next U.S. Trade Representative (USTR):
“We congratulate Ambassador Lighthizer on his confirmation. America’s food and beverage industry manufacturers – companies large and small from coast to coast – are affected by U.S. trade agreements and trade-related policies, chief among them U.S. sugar policy.
“Current U.S. sugar policy hampers the ability of our negotiators to secure the best trade deals that benefit America and the American people, as it reduces the potential positive economic impacts of trade agreements by discouraging U.S. trading partners from making meaningful market access concessions. The result is that the 98 percent of U.S. agriculture that does not produce sugar gets less access to foreign markets than it otherwise might have gained. The effect spills over into the services and manufacturing sectors.
“Though Congress has the ultimate responsibility for reforming U.S. sugar policy to better serve American consumers and all stakeholders in the supply chain, we look forward to working closely with USTR to target and eliminate unfair policies and subsidies that limit the competitiveness of American manufacturers working hard to compete in the global economy.”