Minnesota-based Cargill official supports global trade amid US tariffs

Published 10:00 pm Tuesday, June 19, 2018

MINNEAPOLIS — The Minnesota-based agricultural and shipping giant Cargill is emerging as a leading voice in support of global trade as President Donald Trump imposes tariffs on other countries.

Global trade can be used to promote the environment, education and equality if organizations work together, Devry Boughner Vorwerk, Cargill’s chief of global corporate affairs, said at the Devex 2018 sustainable development exposition last week.

“Without our leaders sitting around the table together isolationism becomes the order of the day,” she said.

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Trump recently announced tariffs that’ll raise the price of U.S. imports of aluminum and steel from Canada, Mexico and the European Union, The Star Tribune reported . The president said the tariffs will rebuild the U.S. steel and aluminum industries and increase U.S. manufacturing jobs.

The president also imposed 25 percent tariffs on $50 billion worth of Chinese products in response to intellectual property conflicts. Experts fear that the Chinese may retaliate with tariffs on U.S. agricultural products such as soybeans, corn and livestock.

Vorwerk wants the U.S. to return to the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade agreement, support the North American Free Trade Agreement, end the Cuban embargo and open trade with North Korea.

Large companies can make a big difference and should be educating others, said Susan Aaronson, a research professor of international affairs at George Washington University.

“Trump is undermining the rule of law,” Aaronson said. “Trade is about mutual benefit. It is built on trust. The rest of the world feels pretty angry.”