Gov. Dunleavy: U.S., China trade deal appears to be a step in the right direction

Published: Jan. 16, 2020 at 12:24 PM AKST
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Appearing on Wednesday at the Alaska Petroleum Club of Anchorage, Governor Mike Dunleavy fielded a wide range of questions before the upcoming legislative session begins next week. He prefaced it all with a topic that would be a focus during much of his address: The newly signed, U.S./China trade agreement.

The deal covers the next two years and partially lays the groundwork for commerce between two of the largest markets on the globe. One condition of the agreement is that China will purchase $200 billion worth of U.S. goods, over the next two years. Each year, $40 billion of that money will be designated directly to purchasing agricultural goods. According to Dunleavy, this means that Alaska's fisheries and timber industry should prepare to see an uptick in business.

There are still some questions about which goods will qualify under the terms laid out by China and the U.S. As far as timber goes, Dunleavy says this could be a great starting point for conversations about logging in Tongass National Forest. The governor's team was not able to provide specific information about how the deal might impact the trade of one of Alaska's biggest resources, Salmon, but- they are working to determine which fisheries might be set to gain from the deal.

"We're working through the details and it's our understanding that pollock might not be included in that," Dunleavy said, "... but we have to take a look and verify that. My people are working on it and the people in the fishing industry in the state of Alaska are looking at it."

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