Iowa farmers have a lot to gain in the Central America Free Trade Agreement, according to Iowa Senator Chuck Grassley. Today, CAFTA goes before the Senate Finance Committee, which Grassley chairs. He says the hearing will review and make recommendations on the proposed legislation.Grassley says CAFTA is “very important to Iowa’s economy because we are an exporting state, not just of agricultural products…I think it’s very important to the economic well being of most every state.” CAFTA covers five Central American nations and the Dominican Republic. Grassley says the agreement is key to cementing democracy in that region. He says the stakes are high and the debate will send an important signal about the United States’ commitment to help improve and stabilize those countries while also helping to expand job prospects at home. Grassley says he’d prefer the words “free trade” in the bill’s title be changed to “fair trade,” at least in how we perceive the measure. He says American products face all sorts of tariffs when trying to enter other nations while the U.S. has very few obstacles preventing other nations from selling their products here. Grassley says CAFTA “levels the playing field” for American workers and farmers. The Finance Committee has jurisdiction over all international trade.
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