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trade

Seven-year-old Aviana Conyers bounces around the bustling back-to-school aisles of a Walmart Supercenter. She grabs her second-grade supply list from her mother, Andrea.

"Mama, do you have any pencils in your bag?" Aviana asks, eager to cross off items on the list.

The craft brewing industry in the Pacific Northwest is starting to feel pain from the Trump administration's steel and aluminum tariffs. Those metals are made into beer cans, kegs and fermentation tanks.

Flickr Photo/(CC BY-NC 2.0) https://flic.kr/p/4WhpRF

This week the Trump administration unveiled a $12 billion bailout for agriculture. It's aimed at easing damage to the industry from the President's new tariffs and his escalating trade war with China.

But is the financial assistance a meaningful solution or a Band-Aid for a longer-term problem?

Bill Radke hears from Washington state farmer Marci Green, president of the Washington Association of Wheat Growers, and Heather Long, economics correspondent at the Washington Post. She explores where U.S. tariff policy is headed and the potential economic and political fallout.  

To see what a trade fight can do to exports, all you need to do is look at pork.

American ham and other pork products now face massive tariffs — between 62 and 70 percent – after two rounds of retaliatory tariffs by China. It's led to almost a standstill in pork exports to China.

"In recent weeks, the U.S. Department of Agriculture has reported zero weekly export sales of pork to China," says Mary Lovely, an economist at Syracuse University. "So our exports to the country have pretty much collapsed."

Policymakers, academics and regional industry leaders from the U.S. and western Canada are getting together in Spokane Monday to get an update on ongoing talks to renegotiate the North American Free Trade Agreement. So far, top U.S., Canadian and Mexican officials have missed numerous self-imposed deadlines to reach a deal.

China has filed a case with the World Trade Organization against the U.S. to protest the Trump administration's plan to put new tariffs on $200 billion worth of Chinese imports. China says the tariffs are illegal attempts at protectionism.

China's Ministry of Commerce announced it is pursuing legal remedy against the U.S. in a brief statement on its website — the latest in an escalating trade conflict between the world's two largest economies.

Flickr Photo/James Nord (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)/https://flic.kr/p/79M3aL

Now it’s Washington state whiskey distillers who are feeling the sting of the tariff battle.


Updated at 8:15 a.m. ET

As the day dawned across the U.S. on Friday, a new economic reality dawned with it: The tariffs long threatened against billions of dollars in Chinese goods took effect just at midnight ET while many Americans were sleeping — but Beijing was ready immediately with a wake-up call of its own.

Canada flag American flag
Flickr Photo/Bruno Casonato (CC-BY-NC-ND)/https://flic.kr/p/c1MdB

Bill Radke talks to Catherine Cullen, senior reporter covering politics and Parliment Hill in Ottawa for the CBC about the new tariffs Canada has put on U.S. products like steel, aluminum and strawberry jam. 

Trade was at the forefront of the conversation with U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue Monday in Spokane.

U.S. beef ranchers who voted heartily for President Donald Trump are getting a bit skittish about his trade wars. International tariffs are set to hit U.S. beef the first week of July.

Rep. Dave Reichert, R-Wash., speaks with the media after testifying before the Senate Law and Justice Committee about Green River serial killer Gary Ridgway on Friday, Nov. 20, 2015, in Olympia, Wash.
AP Photo/Rachel La Corte

Kim Malcolm talks with U.S. Rep Dave Reichert about why he's opposed to President Trump's tariffs on steel and aluminum. The tariffs affect imports from the European Union, Canada and Mexico.

A container ship at the Port of Seattle.
Flickr Photo/Bari Bookout (CC-BY-NC 2.0)/https://flic.kr/p/6kUVcr

The world's biggest cargo ships, some a quarter-mile long, could be docking regularly near downtown Seattle before long.

After four years' study, the Army Corps of Engineers has given the okay to digging deeper shipping channels around Harbor Island at the mouth of the Duwamish River.

Apples at the Olympia Farmers Market.
Flickr Photo/WSDA (CC BY-NC 2.0)/https://flic.kr/p/ZsGd1C

U.S. tariffs on steel and aluminum went into effect Friday for Canada, the European Union and Mexico. That decision by the Trump Administration could now hurt one of Washington state's signature exports: apples. 


Gary Locke is former U.S. ambassador to China and former Governor of Washington State
KUOW Photos / David Hyde

Gary Locke worries the Trump administration is lurching toward a twofold disaster in its China policy.

But he's also hopeful that disaster can be avoided.

Brian Wahlberg gives daughter Luciena a good view of the proceedings as the crowd sings at Cal Anderson Park in Seattle.
KUOW photo/Gil Aegerter

In the liberal bastion that is Seattle, the response to the election was acute. People cried openly on buses and in cafes. Some took time off work to mourn in bed. It wasn't that their candidate had lost, we heard again and again, it was that they feared for the future.

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Flickr Photo/Bruno Casonato (CC-BY-NC-ND)/https://flic.kr/p/c1MdB

Bill Radke speaks with Vancouver Sun columnist Vaughn Palmer about a new trade deal between Canada and the European Union, and about the U.S. presidential elections.

"We, the trade ministers ... are pleased to announce that we have successfully concluded the Trans-Pacific Partnership negotiation," U.S. Trade Representative Michael Froman announced Monday morning, to a loud round of applause.

So far, few Northwest Democrats are getting on board with a deal to "fast track" a pending Pacific trade agreement, The Trans-Pacific Partnership.

The global shipping industry is a ferociously competitive business, and the trans-Pacific route — from Asia to the West Coast seaports of the U.S. — is considered one of the most lucrative routes. Normally, cargo ships carrying everything from fruits and vegetables to cars and electronics can count on getting into a berth at one of the 29 West Coast seaports in a reasonable time.

Aviation Consultant: WTO Trade Rules Are 'Toothless'

May 20, 2014
Flickr Photo/Andrew W. Sieber (CC BY-NC-ND)

Steve Scher talks with Scott Hamilton, an aviation consultant from the Leeham company, about the European Union's potential challenge to Boeing's tax breaks and what that says about trade rules and international business.

Flickr Photo/Jiuck

You've heard the phrase, "It's not personal, it's business." But as people start to share everything from their bedroom to their dog it can, and often is both. So what is the sharing economy? A personal exchange of goods and services, sometimes for free, sometimes for money.

Think couch surfing, where homeowners allow people to sleep on their couch or in their spare bedroom for free. Or AirBnB where you can rent out your house or apartment. Or the Phinney Neighborhood Association's tool library that allows you to borrow tools without a fee. Or new services that allow you to rent out your car. There is even a co-op to share dogs. Ross Reynolds talks to listeners about their experiences, both good and bad, in this new sharing economy.