U.S. Beef Trade in South America

Summary

U.S. beef has a strong and growing presence among consumers in the countries of Central America, South America, and the Caribbean Islands. Free trade agreements with Peru and Chile, in addition to the Central American Free Trade Agreement, have expanded market access for U.S. beef. The recent implementation of free trade agreements with Colombia and Panama present a great opportunity for U.S. beef exports and give us access to consumers in 2/3 of the Western Hemisphere.

Central America and South America

  • In 2012, consumers in Central and South America consumed 34,000 metric tons of U.S. beef at a total of $134,000,000 in sales, a 57% increase from 2011.
  • In 2012, consumers in Chile purchased $59,000,000 in U.S. beef, a 161% increase from 2011. 
  • In 2012, consumers in Peru purchased $30,000,000 in U.S. beef, a 48% increase from 2011. 
  • In 2012, consumers in Guatemala purchased $18,700,000 in U.S. beef, an 18% increase from 2011. 

Colombia Trade Promotion Agreement (CTPA)

  • Prior to the free trade agreement, Colombia placed an 80 percent tariff on U.S. beef imports, making it one of the highest tariffs on U.S. beef in the world.  
  • CTPA was implemented on May 15, 2012. This agreement immediately provided duty free access for high quality U.S. beef, reduced tariffs on all other beef and beef products over 15 years, and for the first time ever, put American beef on a competitive footing with beef imports from Brazil and Argentina.
  • In 2009, the United States exported approximately $436,000 of beef and beef products to Colombia, a paltry sum considering the 80 percent duties. We look forward to expanding U.S. beef sales into Colombia.
  • Another important part of the CTPA is this agreement provides assurances for a stable export market through plant inspection equivalency. It also fully reopens the Colombian market to U.S. beef by assuring that Colombia adheres to the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE) guidelines related to BSE.

Panama

  • The United States and Panama concluded negotiations on a free trade agreement on Dec. 19, 2006. Panama agreed to accept imports of all U.S. beef and beef products. This agreement took effect on October 31, 2012.  
  • Upon implementation, the 30 percent tariff on prime and choice cuts was immediately eliminated and the duties on all other cuts will be phased out over 15 years. 
  • Like the CTPA, the agreement with Panama provides assurances for a stable export market through plant inspection equivalency and Panama also modified its import requirements related to BSE to be consistent with international standards.

Caribbean Islands

  • In 2012, consumers in the Caribbean consumed 21,000 metric tons of U.S. beef at a total of $117,000,000 in sales, an 8% increase from 2011.   
  • In 2012, consumers in the Dominican Republic purchased $32,000,000 in U.S. beef, a 13% increase from 2011. 
  • In 2012, consumers in The Bahamas purchased $22,000,000 in U.S. beef, an 8% increase from 2011.
  • In 2012, consumers in Jamaica purchased nearly $18,000,000 in U.S. beef, a 6% increase from 2011.

Resources

NCBA Contact

Kent Bacus
Send an email 
202-347-0228

National Cattlemen
The official publication of NCBA...provides timely news
articles about the issues and events affecting the beef industry