Bloomberg: Nebraska Governor on NAFTA and the Future of Keystone XL (VIDEO)
Ontario Ag Cast: Talking Trade with Governor Ricketts (AUDIO)
Governor’s Office: Photos from the Governor’s Canadian Trade Mission
Speaking Wednesday by phone from Toronto with Nebraska media, Ricketts noted his previous trips to Japan, China and the European Union: “That is part of what we do as governors, is further those relationships that we have. It’s nothing new to go on a trade mission.”
He said the decision to pay a five-day trade visit to Canada is part of his administration’s approach to running government more like a business, a frequent theme of Ricketts’ public remarks.
“If you were running a business, you would start with your best customers,” he said. “We’re coming up to say ‘thank you’ to Canadians for their business.”
Nebraska TV: Governor begins trade mission to Canada
As Nebraska’s largest export market and fourth largest agriculture export market, Canada is vitally important to the state,” Governor Ricketts said. “Appreciation is a key component of any relationship. During this mission, we are thanking our best customer for their current business, identifying ways to expand our positive trade relationship with Canada, and utilizing this opportunity to open new doors for Nebraska companies to grow their businesses.”
The Governor led the delegation with Nebraska Department of Agriculture (NDA) Director Greg Ibach and Nebraska Department of Economic Development (DED) Director Courtney Dentlinger stated in a release from the Governors (sic) office. Representing the agricultural community are Mark McHargue, Nebraska Farm Bureau; Eric Kamler, Nebraska Corn Growers and Nebraska Corn Board; and Galen Frenzen, Nebraska Cattlemen Association. Mindy Ruffalo, Greater Omaha Chamber of Commerce, will also accompany the delegation for part of the trip.
Lincoln Journal-Star: Ricketts in Canada to boost trade, showcase NAFTA
"As Nebraska's largest export market and fourth-largest agricultural export market, Canada is vitally important to the state," the governor said.
The trade mission also will "help showcase how critical NAFTA is to Nebraska and our trading partners," the governor's office stated in a news release.
Nebraska beef products are the state's No. 1 agricultural export to Canada, totaling $138.2 million in 2015. Pork exports to Canada totaled $61.3 million that year.
Lincoln Journal-Star: Ricketts urges NAFTA negotiators to expand markets
As the Trump administration prepares to open negotiations to "modernize" the North American Free Trade Agreement, Gov. Pete Ricketts on Tuesday urged U.S. negotiators to prioritize growth in market access for U.S. agricultural and manufacturing goods.
"It is crucial that these discussions at a minimum maintain the provisions that have helped make Canada and Mexico Nebraska's top trading partners," the governor said.
"Both of these markets are vital to growing Nebraska," Ricketts said.
Gov. Pete Ricketts and a trade delegation are in Canada to promote business relationships with Nebraska.
Ricketts announced the trade mission in June. During the five-day trade mission, delegates will meet with government, agricultural, and manufacturing officials in Toronto and Ottawa.
Ricketts describes Canada as the state's best customer and hopes the mission will identify "ways to expand our positive trade relationship with Canada."
Associated Press: Ricketts trying to lure Canadian companies to Nebraska
The five-day trade mission is part of an effort to connect Nebraska and Canadian companies. It will include meetings with government, agricultural and manufacturing officials in Toronto and Ottawa. Ricketts said the trip marks the first visit by a Nebraska governor.
"It's up to us to have strong relationships," Ricketts said on a conference call between stops.
Ricketts has said he chose Canada for a trade mission because it's Nebraska's largest export market, and thus the state's best customer. The trade delegation is made up of state agriculture and economic development administrators, the Nebraska Farm Bureau, Nebraska Corn Growers, Nebraska Cattlemen Association and the Greater Omaha Chamber of Commerce.
Department of Finance – Canada: Minister Morneau Promotes Strong Canada-U.S. Relations in Meeting With Governor Pete Ricketts of Nebraska
Canada and the United States have one of the most productive, interconnected and enduring economic relationships in the world. The continued investments in the middle class by the Government of Canada help create jobs now and prepare Canadians for the jobs of the future.
Finance Minister Bill Morneau today met with the Honorable Pete Ricketts, Governor of Nebraska, who was in Toronto as part of a trade mission to Canada. The Minister reaffirmed the strong relationship between the U.S. and Canada, which delivers economic activity and good jobs to every corner of both countries. The Minister highlighted the US$1.9 billion in annual bilateral trade between Canada and Nebraska, as well as the 57,400 Nebraska jobs that depend on trade and investment with Canada. Canada is one of Nebraska's top two export markets, with a trade relationship centred on agriculture, and integrated supply chains.
Canada and the U.S will keep working together to achieve our shared goal of creating good, well-paying jobs and improving the lives for the middle class on both sides of the border.
"I've talked to the administration. I've encouraged them to make sure we don't disrupt that great relationship," Ricketts told Chris Hall, host of CBC Radio's The House.
"You've got a lot of really smart people in that administration. We've communicated with them the importance of [the relationship] and I think they are going to do the right thing."
Ricketts was in Canada this week meeting with both government and business officials in Toronto and Ottawa.
Governor Ricketts says, “We export about $1.6 billion in goods and services to Canada every year and the way to grow your business is you want to start with your best customers so we are saying thank you and looking for new opportunities to open up doors for our producers and companies in Nebraska and to also seek companies in Canada looking to invest in Nebraska to create jobs there.”
Ricketts met with several trade ministers during his travels and the North American Free Trade Agreement, NAFTA, has been a concern to both countries. He says trips like this are planned well in advance and was not in conjunction with the talks on renegotiating NAFTA that start on August 16th. However, Governor Ricketts says that is a topic of discussion. He says they want to see this agreement improved as the world continues to change. Governor Ricketts says, “We want to make sure that we keep in mind the bigger picture that this has been a tremendously successful relationship and NAFTA has been a tremendously successful agreement for the state of Nebraska. Hundreds of millions of dollars in beef flow back and forth between Canada every year and that is an important relationship we don’t want to disrupt.”
Governor’s Office: Gov. Ricketts, Trade Delegation Return from Canadian Trade Mission
“As Nebraska’s largest export market for ethanol and second largest for pork, Canada is a key market for growing agriculture,” said NDA Director Ibach. “The meetings and events held throughout the trade mission allowed Nebraska’s ag producers to make the case firsthand for Nebraska’s quality commodities.”
DED Director Courtney Dentlinger’s presentation, “Why Nebraska,” showcased the state’s central location, quality products, and dedicated workforce as ideal for Canadian companies looking to do business for the first time here or expand their current operations.
“Nebraska businesses have built strong relationships in Canada,” said Dentlinger. “We have significant investment from Canadian companies in our state.”