The U.S. Grains Council welcomed the announcement this week that both Mexico and Canada will participate in the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) negotiations. The inclusion of the United States’ current North American Free Trade Agreement partners will build on the successful expansion of trade under the existing agreement and create substantially greater opportunities for economic growth, new jobs and increases in trade and investment flows in the future.

“Mexico and Canada are already top customers for U.S. corn, sorghum and barley,” said USGC Chairman Dr. Wendell Shauman. “We are already strong trade partners, and it makes good sense for all of us to extend that partnership across the Pacific.”

With the inclusion of both countries in the TPP agreement, U.S. producers and grain exporters and the thousands of Americans they employ stand to benefit greatly from stronger North American representation in the talks. Inclusion of Canada and Mexico will also add economic geopolitical strength to the TPP and increase other countries’ interest in joining the TPP negotiation.

As the third-largest economy in the world and the fourth-largest trading partner of the United States, Japan’s entry into the TPP negotiations would considerably increase the economic significance of the proposed agreement.

“Like Canada and Mexico, Japan has been a long-standing and loyal customer for U.S. grains and co-products, and we believe their participation will provide mutual long-term economic benefits,” Shauman said.