USMCA Almost There, But Not Quite

(IARN) — We were all excited when the Senate Finance Committee passed the United States – Mexico – Canada Agreement (USMCA) by a vote of 25-3. This meant the road was clear to send the trade pact to the full Senate. That was the case until the Senate Parliamentarian pulled the reigns and said, “Whoa there! This bill needs to make a few more stops along the way.” Suddenly it was less like being on a commuter train, and more like being on the local train. However, the Senate committee leaders are still committed to getting USMCA through. Read more

FCC Proposing $20.4 Billion For Rural Broadband

(IARN) — Federal Communications Commission Chairman (FCC) Ajit Pai this week presented his colleagues with final rules to launch the new $20.4 billion Rural Digital Opportunity Fund. Chairman Pai says the fund would “target rural areas across the country where residents currently lack access to adequate broadband.” The rules will be voted on by the FCC at its Open Meeting on January 30. Read more

FSA Facility Loans Can Help Avoid Another Propane Shortage

(IARN) — Last fall, one of the biggest headaches we faced was not being able to get propane when we needed it. The wet year and the lack of any real drying conditions increased the need for propane to dry grain. This coupled against some cold snaps which increased demand of propane for heating as well. The Farm Service Agency can help you avoid another setback like this for your operation in the future. Read more

Market Shares In China Not Guaranteed In Phase 1 Agreement

(IARN) — We all anticipate the signing of the Phase 1 trade deal between the United States and China. This marks the first step forward in a trade war that has waged for over 18 months. However, don’t count your chickens before they are hatched. Because even if they do hatch, there’s no guarantee they will be getting shipped to China. Read more

China To Release More From Pork Reserves

(IARN) — Ahead of the Chinese New Year, China will release 20,000 metric tons of frozen pork in state-held reserves. China has previously released more than 100,000 metric tons of pork from state reserves since last month, seeking to stabilize supplies following impacts of African swine fever. Read more