U.S. SENATE — U.S. Senator Steve Daines led his colleagues U.S. Senators John Barrasso (R-WY), Rob Portman (R-OH), John Kennedy (R-LA) and U.S. Representatives Chris Stewart (R-UT) and Brad Wenstrup (R-OH) in a letter to the Chinese Premier Li Keqiang urging him to open Chinese markets to U.S. beef imports.
The letter follows their official overseas congressional delegation trip to China where the Members of Congress met with Premier Li and raised the issue of U.S. beef imports to China.
Daines hand carried four Montana steaks and a photo of Fred Wacker of Miles City and his cows to China and presented them to Premier Li Keqiang to underscore the importance of opening Chinese markets to U.S. beef imports and expanding opportunities for Montana agriculture.
The letter is available to download HERE and below:
Dear Premier Li:
We write to thank you for your hospitality during our Congressional delegation’s visit to the People’s Republic of China last month and to raise once again the important issue of U.S. beef being denied access to China’s market since 2003. We hope you were able to enjoy the steaks delivered from a Montana ranch and were able to experience first-hand the high- quality beef that U.S. ranchers can provide to Chinese consumers.
We were encouraged by the announcement by China’s Ministry of Agriculture in September 2016 that China would lift its ban on U.S. beef. Technical issues still remain, however, and during our Congressional delegation visit, you indicated that the U.S. lacking a Senate-confirmed Secretary of Agriculture was an impediment to resolving this issue. We respectfully request that following the recent confirmation of the Honorable Sonny Perdue as Secretary of Agriculture, you prioritize reaching an agreement that allows Chinese consumers to have the opportunity to enjoy high-quality U.S. beef and direct all relevant agencies within your government to do the same.
Thank you for your consideration and we look forward to continuing to work with you to address these issues and reach a resolution that is mutually beneficial to our countries.