Tariff boost likely to affect KELOLAND farmers


SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO)– The U.S./China trade war escalated Friday. and the effect on South Dakotans could be worse than it has already been. 

The trade talks lasted for just two hours Friday. Then, the U.S. and China walked away with no deal.
Chinese negotiators have left Washington D.C., with no plans to return.

And the U.S. has put huge new tariffs – or taxes-  on hundreds of billions in Chinese goods, and it is going to impact your wallets. 

President Donald Trump has now imposed a 25 percent tariff on $250 billion worth of Chinese goods. The ball is also rolling Friday night for a 25 percent tariff on another $325 billion worth of imports …basically everything China sends to the U.S.   

Whether it comes from a store shelf or showroom, prepare to pay more for products made in China.

The new tariffs could increase prices on everything from deodorant and dog leashes to bicycles and backpacks, but you’ll really feel it on higher priced items like appliances — existing tariffs on washers and dryers cost customers $1.5 billion last year 

Friday’s tariff hike to 25 percent could cost the American economy $62 billion by next year…  that translates to an extra $500 to $800 per family. 

Experts predict it could cost the us more than 900,000 jobs. 

China says it will respond and higher tariffs on U.S. made goods are likely.  While Beijing tonight has yet to announce which products it will target, KELOLAND farmers could be hit hard.

“It’s not something we wished for. Tariffs have made our lives difficult in the soybean farming world,” Kevin Scott said.

Kevin Scott is the National Director for the American Soybean Association. He says soybean prices could take a big hit if tariffs increase. Just last week soybean prices hit an 11-year-low.

“Our prices currently are about $2 below our break-even price and that is not acceptable for us,” Scott said. “

 And South Dakota Senator John Thune agrees.

“It’s certainly not a good story for agriculture. We’ve already seen a lot of detrimental impacts on the ag economy as a result of the tariffs,” Thune said.

Despite this, Thune thinks the president is doing the right thing.

“China has been guilty of trade abuses going back for decades and nobody has done anything about it. He’s trying to do something about it,” Thune said.

Both Thune and Scott hope a deal can be made soon.

“We got to get these markets open up again and give our farmers and ranchers someplace to sell their products,” Thune said.

“We’re going to play the cards we’ve been dealt, and that’s all we can do,” Scott said.

Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue tweeted..President Trump “is steadfast in his support for U.S. farmers and directed the USDA to work on a plan quickly. The president loves his farmers and will not let them down!”

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