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Office of Governor Pete Ricketts

Gov. Ricketts Visits White House for Roundtable on Agriculture & International Trade

Governor Ricketts participates in a roundtable discussion at the White House.

Governor Ricketts participates in a roundtable discussion at the White House.

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Governor Pete Ricketts participated in a roundtable discussion hosted by President Donald J. Trump at the White House with members of Nebraska’s federal delegation and other governors.  During the roundtable, Governor Ricketts urged President Trump to continue to open up new markets for Nebraska’s quality agriculture products and to pursue trade strategies that help grow agriculture. 

“Nebraskans appreciate the work the President has done to open new markets for Nebraska beef and pork, but there is also uncertainty around the disruption tariffs may cause,” said Governor Ricketts.  “The President led a great working meeting today on agriculture, trade, and ethanol issues.  During the discussion, I urged the President to put a continued focus on expanding markets for agriculture.  He listened and expressed a commitment to growing international trade so we can grow opportunities for our farmers and ranchers.”

Governor Ricketts has been an advocate for expanding international trade opportunities for Nebraska’s farm and ranch families.  The Governor has led trade missions to China, Japan, Canada, and the European Union to expand markets and build new partnerships. 

The roundtable discussion comes amidst concerns about the impact of trade negotiations on Nebraska’s farm and ranch families.  To date, President Trump’s trade discussions have resulted in the opening of negotiations in key markets such as China, Japan, Vietnam, Argentina, and South Korea.  This week amidst negotiations, President Xi Jinping of China declared that the country would open sectors such as banking and auto manufacturing, increase imports of American goods, and expand intellectual property protections, among other reforms.


International trade is a key driver of Nebraska’s economy.  Statistics for 2017 show that Nebraska increased total pork exports by 20 percent and beef exports increased by 12 percent.  Every dollar in agricultural exports generates $1.22 in economic activities such as transportation, financing, warehousing, and production.  Nebraska’s $6.4 billion in ag exports during 2016 translated to $7.8 billion in additional economic activity.

Top 5 Ag Export Products:

  1. Soybeans and Soybean Products - $2.08 billion
  2. Beef – $1.26 billion
  3. Corn - $1.16 billion
  4. Pork - $479 million
  5. Hides and Skins - $291.9 million

Top 5 Ag Export Markets:

  1. China - $1.43 billion
  2. Mexico - $956 million
  3. Japan - $887.1 million
  4. South Korea - $499.9 million
  5. Canada - $433.5 million