Amendments and modifications to the Korea-U.S. Free Trade Agreement (KORUS) were announced March 28 through a U.S.-Korea joint statement and a KORUS fact sheet issued by the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR).
U.S. Meat Export Federation (USMEF) President and CEO Dan Halstrom issued the following statement:
“The announcement of a successfully revised KORUS trade agreement comes as excellent news for the U.S. beef and pork industries because it helps ensure that we will continue to be able to serve the growing South Korean market and a critically important customer base. The United States is the largest supplier of beef to Korea and trails only the European Union as the second-largest pork supplier. U.S. red meat exports to Korea set a record last year of $1.7 billion, up 19 percent year-over-year and up 69 percent from 2012.
“Under KORUS, most U.S. pork products now enter Korea duty free. The duty on U.S. beef has been reduced from 40 percent to 21.3 percent and will continue to decline each year until it is eliminated by 2026. It is especially important that these tariff rate reductions are maintained, because the other major pork and beef suppliers to Korea also have free trade agreements with similar market access terms.”