Former U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk was the keynote speaker at the Renewable Fuels Association (RFA) National Ethanol Conference this week where the theme was “Going Global” with an emphasis on exports.
“I want to thank you for your very strong and vocal support for a very smart trade policy for our country over the years,” said Kirk, who served under President Obama in his first term. “You understand the importance of going global.”
Kirk lamented that too many Americans have “gone sour” on international trade, citing a poll that found twice as many Americans said they believe in the existence of UFOs than believed international trade was good for America. “We have got to go out and tell the story of the real benefits of trade,” he said.
Listen to Kirk’s remarks here: Former USTR Ron Kirk at NEC 15
After his remarks, I had the chance to interview Amb. Kirk about agricultural trade issues, such as Japan’s desire to exempt products in the TPP negotiations. Interview with former USTR Ron Kirk