The growers' agreement was negotiated during a series of cordial meetings conducted in Brazil and the United States. During the meetings, the Brazilian growers received a detailed explanation of the insurance program, requested further modifications to cotton provisions (the insurance product had already been modified based on comments by Brazilian government officials), and spent considerable time discussing ways the U.S. and Brazilian grower organizations could cooperate.
As a result of the discussions, U.S. growers asked Congress to make additional modifications to the cotton provisions and to broaden the scope of projects that could be conducted using the nearly $500 million in funds transferred to the Brazilian Cotton Institute (BCI) under the U.S.-Brazil Framework Agreement.
In comments to the press, the Brazilian growers imply the acceptability of program reforms was contingent on the continued transfer of funds to the BCI. Throughout the negotiations, U.S. growers cautioned the Brazilian growers that the transfer of funds was increasingly controversial and in jeopardy.
Certainly, U. S. growers were disappointed that Administration officials announced in August that the transfers would be terminated October 1, essentially abrogating the Framework Agreement under which Brazil has agreed to postpone retaliation while the new farm bill is developed by Congress. U.S. growers appreciate the patience of the Brazilian government in delaying retaliation while work on the new farm bill is completed.
The comments by the Brazilian growers that they would support retaliation are deeply disappointing to U.S. growers who have delivered significant policy reform, supported further modifications to the cotton provisions, supported the request to expand authority to use the nearly $500 million already transferred to the BCI, and supported maintaining the Framework Agreement.
Although their comments were couched in politically correct terms like "single undertaking," it is clear the Brazilian growers simply want more money in addition to the policy reforms. It is also clear that they are willing to misrepresent the insurance program to achieve their objective.
Under the new insurance option, cotton growers could purchase supplemental insurance that includes a significant deductible that was actually increased in response to earlier criticisms. The insurance product covers a narrow band of lost income in the event that actual revenue does not meet a percentage of projected revenue.
It is a well-calibrated budget
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