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Trade meeting between U.S. and China called off

Published: Aug. 19, 2020 at 8:12 AM CDT
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ALTOONA, Wis. (WEAU) - U.S. and China trade officials did get last weekend off because their scheduled video conference to discuss the progress of the new trade deal between the 2 countries was called off. No reason was given but some observers said the ongoing meetings of senior members of China’s Communist Party were still going on and those meetings take priority. One of the topics that was expected to come up was how far behind China is in their required purchases of U.S. products during the first year of the deal. China is supposed to buy $77 billion more from us than they did in 2017 but the numbers show they have only purchased a little over $36 and a half billion so far this year. No new date was given for a re-scheduled meeting.

In other trade news, the 4th round of talks between the U.S. and the United Kingdom are supposed to begin early next month. During this new round, both countries are supposed to exchange market access offers. Those offers should outline both countries' timetable for elimination of tariffs on most products.

Iowa is getting $4 billion in federal aid to help lessen the effects of last Monday's Derecho storm that hit over 14 million acres of Iowa's cropland. President Trump, who said he plans to visit Iowa soon, approved the money this past Monday. Besides all the damage to crops and buildings, the storm also caused 3 deaths in Iowa.

Another survey from the national agricultural Statistics Service is about to begin and it will include about 28,000 farmers across the country, including Wisconsin. This time it's survey to find out about small grain production across the country this year. Surveyers want to know estimated acreage and production of small grains like barley, oats and wheat. Farmers included in the survey can respond on line or by mail. And if they don't do it that way, someone will call to get the information. Results of the survey will be published in reports released at the end of September.

It's the Chippewa Chamber's Farmer Appreciation Dinner today at the Northern Wisconsin State fairgrounds. The event was postponed from its regular June date because of Covid-19. But it will be a drive thru chicken dinner with serving from 4 until 8:30 this evening.

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