Government Shutdown Prevents Aid to Farmers

By Selina Stoller, Summit Consumer Receivables Acquisitions, LLC ***


The U.S. government shutdown could delay relief payments to farmers.

The federal government is still in a partial shutdown due to congressional gridlock over approving $5 billion in funding for President Trump’s proposed southern border wall.

The standoff not only impacts thousands of federal workers but now farmers receiving trade aid reliefs payments will also be effected.

The market facilitation program was announced in July by the Trump administration in response to retaliatory trade tariffs imposed on the U.S in an effort to help farmers hurt by U.S.-China trade war. The relief payments to farmers are part of a $12 billion emergency aid package.

The direct payments provide compensation to producers of soybeans, corn, cotton, almonds, dairy, hogs, sorghum, and wheat.

Soybean farmers receive the most direct aid compensation from the market facilitation program with direct payments totaling more than $7.2 billion.

China is the world’s largest buyer of soy, and the U.S. is usually the country’s second-biggest supplier. In November, China’s soybean imports from the U.S. fell to zero – the first time since the trade war began that China has imported no U.S. supplies.

The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) said last week that during a government shutdown various programs “would not be continued and would be shut down in an orderly fashion during a government funding lapse.”

The partial shutdown also impacts various research functions of the USDA and some of its rural development programs. This could delay the release of key USDA reports, including the monthly World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimate report.

In 2013, a government shutdown lasted 16 days resulting in the USDA canceling more than 20 key regularly scheduled reports or data releases.

  • 3 Jan, 2019
  • Josh Smith

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