Taiwan Signs Letter of Intent with USSEC Valued at $1.26 Billion in U.S. Soybeans
A Taiwanese delegation in Washington, D.C., signed a letter of intent on September 16 with USSEC committing to purchase between 2.6 and 2.9 million metric tons of soybeans valued between $1.13 and $1.26 billion U.S. dollars by 2017, as part of the Taiwanese Agricultural Goodwill Mission. The letter is evidence of Taiwan’s commitment to strengthening trade ties and maintaining the well-established trade partnership between the United States and Taiwan.
In 2014, Taiwan was the fifth largest market for U.S. soybeans, importing 1.3 million metric tons of U.S. soy, which represented a 55 percent market share. Taiwan imports more than 1.15 million metric tons of U.S. soybeans annually, valued between $600 and $720 million U.S. dollars. From January to June 2015, Taiwan imported nearly a million metric tons of U.S. soybeans valued at $442 million U.S. dollars.
“Taiwan has been a loyal, long-term partner of U.S. Soy for more than 40 years,” said USSEC Chairman Laura Foell. “The Taiwan Goodwill Mission helps the U.S. and Taiwanese government officials, traders and end-users to keep the lines of communication open, which is so important to maintaining our great relationship with this valuable buyer.”
While in Washington, members of the mission met with USSEC, the U.S. Grains Council, U.S. Wheat Associates, the North American Export Grain Association and the National Grain and Feed Association, as well as U.S. government officials. The mission delegates also signed letters of intent to purchase U.S. soybeans, wheat and co-products with USSEC and the U.S. Wheat Associates.
Following the signing ceremony at the U.S. Capitol complex, members of the Taiwanese delegation will tour the U.S. Grain Belt to see U.S. farms and grain elevators firsthand. They will meet with government officials, farmers, agriculture groups and other important international organizations in Iowa, Illinois, Kentucky and Minnesota.
The biennial Goodwill Mission has been organized by Taiwan’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) since 1998. USSEC’s participation in the mission is an important part of its work to continue Taiwan’s preference for U.S. soybeans.