What is in this article?:
- ASA: Panama Canal expansion crucial for exports
- No. 1 export commodity
• Soybeans and soybean products are the No. 1 United States export commodity.
• Last year, the U.S. exported a record-setting $23 billion in soybeans, soybean oil and soybean meal.
• This amount represents one-fifth of all U.S. agricultural exports and over 50 percent of U.S. soybean production.
The American Soybean Association (ASA) has witnessed the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between the Panama Canal Authority and the Soy Transportation Coalition (STC) to undertake joint initiatives for marketing, data interchange, and market studies regarding modernization and improvements to the Panama Canal.
The MOU was signed by Alberto Aleman Zubieta, Administrator/Chief Executive Officer for the Panama Canal Authority and Ed Ulch, STC Chairman and soybean farmer from Solon, Iowa, at an event in Washington, D.C.
Other attendees included the Panamanian Ambassador to the United States Mario Jaramillo, U.S. Ambassador and Chief Agriculture Negotiator Islam Siddiqui, congressional staff, soybean farmers and staff representing ASA, the United Soybean Board, and STC, and representatives of numerous agricultural organizations and companies.
Speaking at the event, ASA Chairman Rob Joslin, a soybean producer from Sidney, Ohio, welcomed Administrator Aleman and the Panamanian officials and stressed the importance of the canal in the export of U.S. soybeans.
“The record levels of soybean exports we are experiencing surely would not be possible without the vital link the canal provides,” Joslin said. “While trade markets and exports are going well for U.S. soybean farmers today, we recognize we have to continually look for ways to improve our competitiveness or else we will be overtaken by our competitors in the global marketplace.”