Lobster and trade deal

WASHINGTON, D.C. — U.S. Senator Susan Collins (R-ME) announced last Wednesday that the Phase One Trade Deal signed by the United States and China today includes a provision expected to benefit Maine’s lobster industry.

The deal, focused on overall structural reform in China, includes purchase agreements formalizing China’s commitment to buy more American goods and services in a variety of sectors as part of a truce in the U.S.-China trade war.

“The inclusion of this provision in the Phase One Trade Agreement is a significant victory for Maine’s lobster industry, which has been unfairly harmed by retaliatory tariffs,” Senator Collins said in a statement.

“I appreciate U.S. Trade Representative Lighthizer’s responsiveness to the concerns industry members and I raised and for his efforts to secure the provision in the agreement.”

“The Maine Lobster Dealers’ Association has worked closely with the Maine Delegation on major trade issues for several years now,” said Annie Tselikis Executive Director Maine Lobster Dealers’ Association. “The delegation helped us coordinate a meeting with USTR in 2018, opening critical lines of communication to officials involved in trade policy that directly impacts Maine lobster companies.

“The Chinese retaliatory tariffs have placed Maine lobster exporters at a disadvantage in that market for 18 months, in which time Canada became the major player in that market,” Tselikis continued. “We are grateful to Sen. Collins, her staff, and the entire delegation for their unwavering support and dedication to the success of the lobster industry. China presents incredible opportunity for the coastal Maine economy and regaining access to that market is essential for our long term growth.”

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