Australia Working Visit

A trip report is now available for Katy’s last working visit of the year to Australia on July 21-August 4.  On this working visit Katy visit traveled to Sydney to work closely with IGTC member Grain Trade Australia. Following her work in Sydney, Katy traveled on to Melbourne to participate in  the 2017 Australian Grain Industry Conference (AIGC).

At GTA Katy conducted a working visit from July 22-28 and coordinated with Sydney-based corporate stakeholders to gather insight and inform them on IGTC policy files.

At the 2017 AGIC in Melbourne from July 29 – August 5, Katy presented before the conference on the theme “Global grain industry working together to facilitate trade”. The session focused on global food security and the role of the grains industry. A copy of her AGIC presentation can be found here.

While in Melbourne, Katy also updated a smaller group of GTA leaders sitting on the Table and Market Access Committee on IGTC policies regarding phytosanitary control, electronic trading documentation, and minimum residue limits (MRL).

A copy of Katy’s trip report can be found here.

Food and Ag Dialogue High Level Steering Group Meeting

On Tuesday, September 26 the Gary and Ryan attended a meeting of the U.S. Food and Agriculture Dialogue for Trade’s High Level Steering Group at the Inter-American Institute for Cooperation in Agriculture (IICA) in Washington, D.C. During the meeting, the Dialogue was briefed by Mike Green, Senior Vice President for Asia and Japan Chair at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS). Mike discussed the Asia-Pacific security situation, U.S.-Korea relations, and the KORUS agreement. During the meeting, the steering group also heard reports from the Asia-Pacific and North American Working Groups, and discussed further outreach and engagement with administration officials and stakeholder groups.

Please contact Ryan for more information.

Coast Guard BWM Convention Guidelines

This week the Coast Guard released a policy letter providing guidelines for voluntary compliance with the International Convention for the Control and Management of Ships’ Ballast Water and Sediments (BMW Convention). The purpose of the letter is to establish a voluntary inspection program for US flagged commercial vessel owners/operators who wish to document compliance with the standards of the BWM Convention. You can read the letter here.

Cuba Embassy Staffing

On September 29, in response to unexplained attacks against U.S. Embassy staff in Cuba over the past year, Secretary Rex Tillerson instructed the State Department to reduce its Havana staff to emergency personnel only. In addition, the Department issued a Travel Warning advising U.S. citizens to avoid travel to Cuba for the time being. Secretary Tillerson’s statement accompanying the order noted that the decision was intended to ensure the safety of embassy personnel, and that “Cuba has told us it will continue to investigate these attacks and we will continue to cooperate with them in this effort.” You can read the Secretary’s full statement here.