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Tariff Tensions | October 2019 | Louisiana Public Square


EXCELLENCE IN LOUISIANA PUBLIC BROADCASTING. AND FROM VIEWERS LIKE YOU. ♪ HELLO AND WELCOME TO “LOUISIANA PUBLIC SQUARE.” I’M LPB NEWS ANCHOR NATASHA WILLIAMS. WE ARE DELIGHTED TO BE COMING TO YOU FROM THE SANDERS’ PERFORMING ART CENTER, IN HISTORIC DOWNTOWN ALEXANDRIA. WE CHOSE TO TRAVEL TO THE HEART OF THE STATE TO DISCUSS A TOPIC THAT AFFECTS MANY ECONOMIC SECTORS. THE TRADE WAR WITH CHINA. AS A CANDIDATE DONALD TRUMP WON OVER THE STATES BY PROMISING TO REVIVE AMERICAN FACTORIES. AS PRESIDENT, HE HAS IMPLEMENTED TARIFFS TO HELP DOMESTIC STEEL PRODUCERS AND COMBAT UNFAIR TRADE PRACTICES BY CHINA. BUT WHAT ARE THE CONSEQUENCES? A RECENT STUDY RANKS LOUISIANA AMONG THE THREE TOP STATES MOST VULNERABLE IN THE U.S. AND CHINA TRADE CONFLICT. OVER THE NEXT HOUR WE’LL EXPLORE THE LOUISIANA’S WINNERS AND CASUALTIES IN THE TRADE WAR AND HOW THE STATE IS ADDRESSING TARIFF TENSIONS. TODAY WE CELEBRATE THE AMAZING WORKERS AT SIMPRA ENERGY AS YOU OPEN THE CAMERON ENERGY EXPORT FACILITY FOR BUSINESS. I HAVE NEVER SEEN ANYTHING LIKE THIS IN MY LIFE. THIS IS INCREDIBLE. [APPLAUSE] IN MARCH, PRESIDENT TRUMP TOURED THE NATURAL GAS FACILITY IN CAMERON PARISH. THE VISIT CAME A DAY AFTER THE ADMINISTRATION’S TRADE WAR LED CHINA TO RAISE TARIFFS BY 15%. SO FAR, LOUISIANA’S LNG INDUSTRY IS STANDING STRONG. GREG BOWSER IS THE CEO OF THE LOUISIANA CHEMICAL ASSOCIATION. A LOT OF THEM HAVE CONTRACTS IN PLACE TO BUY THE LNG WE SHIP OUT, AND SO I DON’T KNOW IF IT WILL EXACT THE CONTRACTS. IT DEPENDS ON HOW THEY ARE NEGOTIATED. THE TARIFFS ARE AFFECTING CHINESE INVESTMENT IN THE STATE, GREG BOWSER SAYS. WHEN YOU BUILD A CHEMICAL MANUFACTURING PLANT YOU HAVE A LOT OF STEEL AND THINGS THAT GO INTO IT. THOSE THINGS WOULD BE SUBJECT TO A 15% OR 25% TARIFF SO THAT’S GOING TO HAVE AN IMPACT ON HOW QUICKLY OR WHETHER OR NOT PEOPLE MAKE INVESTMENTS. SO FAR IT HASN’T STOPPED IT BUT IT’S REALLY SLOWING THINGS DOWN. THE TRADE WAR HAS ALSO PUT SOME EXPANSION PROJECTS IN LIMBO. IF YOU HAD A FACILITY THAT YOU WERE BUILDING, HERE IN LOUISIANA, AND YOU ARE ABOUT 80% COMPLETE, AND ALL OF A SUDDEN A TARIFF GOES INTO PLACE, WELL, THE NUMBERS YOU USED TO RUN TO MAKE THE CALCULATION ARE OUT OF WHACK NOW. WHAT — DO YOU OPEN THAT FACILITY OR WHAT DO YOU DO? THOSE ARE THE KINDS OF CONVERSATIONS THAT ARE GOING ON RIGHT NOW. WHILE INCREASED TARIFFS ON IMPORTED STEEL AND ALUMINUM HAVE HELPED, THEY HURT BUSINESS THAT IS RELY ON THESE IMPORTS. DON FOWLER IS PRESIDENT OF AFCO INDUSTRIES, HEADQUARTERED IN ALEXANDRIA. IT IS A MANUFACTURER OF PRODUCTION FOR THE HOME BUILDING INDUSTRY. WE HAVE BEEN IN BUSINESS IN ALEXANDRIA, LOUISIANA SINCE 1946. THE EMPLOYEE-OWNED BUSINESS BRINGS IN ALUMINUM FROM CHINA TO MANUFACTURE THE BUILDING MATERIALS. SINCE MAY OF LAST YEAR THE METAL HAS BEEN A SUBJECT OF A 10% TARIFF. THIS YEAR AFCO IS ON FACE TO CONSUME 17 MILLION POUNDS OF ALUMINUM. SO, THE 10% TARIFF ON THAT ALUMINUM IS PRETTY SIGNIFICANT IN TERMS OF THE BOTTOM LINE. DON FOWLER’S BIGGEST LINE IS THAT TARIFFS ARE NOT BEING APPLIED FAIRLY. COMPETITORS WHO IMPORT THE FINISHED GOODS THAT AFCO MANUFACTURERS ARE EXEMPT FROM ANY TARIFFS. IT REALLY GIVES THEM AN UNFAIR ADVANTAGE IN THAT THEY CAN GO INTO OUR CUSTOMERS WITH THE EXACT PRODUCT THAT WE MANUFACTURE, THAT THEY IMPORTED FROM CHINA, AND THEY CAN GO IN AT A LOWER COST. AS EFFICIENT AS WE ARE AS A MANUFACTURER, IT’S DIFFICULT TO OVERCOME THAT ADVANTAGE. THIS IMBALANCE IS IMPACTING THE MANUFACTURING PLANT IN MISSISSIPPI, BUT COULD RIPPLE ACROSS THE ENTIRE OPERATION. WE SUPPLY ALUMINUM FROM THIS PLANT TO THAT ONE. SO IF OUR COMPETITORS ARE ALLOWED TO CONTINUE TO OPERATE THE WAY THAT THEY ARE AND NOT BE SUBJECT TO ANY TARIFFS, IT COULD IMPACT OUR BUSINESS AT THAT PLANT, WHICH THEY WOULD HAVE, AND IN FACT, ON WHAT WE DO HERE AND AT OUR OTHER PLANT. THE LARGEST EMPLOYER IN ST. JOHN, THE BAPTIST PARISH, FILED FOR BANKRUPTCY AT THE END OF SEPTEMBER. WHILE THE COMPANY HASN’T GIVEN A REASON, GOVERNOR EDWARDS BLAMED TARIFFS AS THE CULPRIT. IN 2018, EXPORTS TO CHINA, THE BIGGEST TRADING PARTNER, DROPPED BY MORE THAN 60% DUE TO THE TRADE WAR. THE 25% TARIFF ON SOYBEANS SIGNIFICANTLY HIT LOUISIANA FARMERS. CHINA WAS THE STATE’S LARGEST EXPORT MARKET FOR THE CROP. IT’S DEFINITELY A DARK TIME IN AGRICULTURE, IN LOUISIANA AS WELL AS IN THE UNITED STATES. GEORGE TOOK OVER THE FAMILY FARM MORE THAN 30 YEARS AGO WHEN HIS FATHER PASSED AWAY. G&G FARMS FARMS HAS GROWN TO 10,000 ACRES WITH 5,000 DEVOTED TO SOYBEANS. WE GROW 1,000 ACRES OF COTTON. WE GROW 1,000 ACRES OF CORN, AND WE GROW ABOUT 3,500 ACRES OF SUGARCANE. 4, 500 ACRES OF WHEAT. AND 400 ACRES OF CRAWFISH. WE ARE DIVERSIFIED. THE COURT HAS SEEN FARMERS GO OUT OF BUSINESS DUE TO LOW PRICES AND BAD CROPS. IT HAS BEEN A FACTOR THAT NEEDS NEW BLOOD TO REPLACE THE AGING FARMERS. THE TRADE WAR HAS INTENSIFIED THE PROBLEM. IF YOU WERE A YOUNG, BEGINNING FARMER TODAY, I DON’T THINK THAT YOU CAN GET FINANCED TO MAKE IT WORK AT THESE PRICES. IT DOES NOT HAVE ENOUGH RETURN TO MAKE A LIVING. IT WILL BE DOWN 250,000 IN BEAN REVENUE THIS YEAR WHILE HE RECEIVES AID FROM THE 16 BILLION FEDERAL MARKET PROGRAM, IT’S FAR FROM COVERING HIS LOSSES FOR GEORGE LACOUR BUT DESPITE THE IMPACT, GEORGE LACOUR SUPPORTS ARRIVES AS A WAY TO FORCE CHINA TO TRADE FAIRLY. I AM AN AMERICAN FIRST. I AM A FARMER SECOND. I UNDERSTAND THE NEED TO HAVE A FAIR PLAYING FIELD BECAUSE THE U.S. PRODUCES MORE AG PRODUCTS THAN IT CONSUMES, SO WE DO FREE TRADE ALL AROUND THE GLOBE. WE JUST PREFER FAIR TRADE. THERE IS NO WINNER IN THIS SITUATION. THE CHAIR OF THE ECONOMICS DEPARTMENT AT LSU, WHILE HE UNDERSTANDS THE ADMINISTRATION’S CONCERNS WITH UNFAIR TRADE PRACTICES BY CHINA, HE SAYS THAT TARIFFS ARE NOT THE ANSWER. WHILE THEY HELP SOME PRODUCERS, HE SAYS THAT HE MUST LOOK AT THE ECONOMY AND THE CURRENT OUTLOOK IS GRIM. WHAT WE ARE ESTIMATING IS THERE WILL BE A DECLINE IN THE GDP BY 1%. AND SINCE WE ARE NOT AT THE POINT WHERE THE ECONOMY IS SLOWING DOWN, THIS MAY BE SOMETHING THAT WILL TILT THE ECONOMY TOWARDS RECESSION. JOINING US TO GIVE US THEIR OUTLOOK ON THE ISSUE IS OUR AUDIENCE, IT INCLUDES REPRESENTATIVES FROM THE FARM BUREAU FOUNDATION, ALEXANDRIA MANUFACTURERS AND WE HAVE MEMBERS OF THE YOUTH ADVISORY COUNCIL FROM ALEXANDRIA AND SHREVEPORT. IN AUGUST, JUST OVER A YEAR AFTER THE TRADE WAR BEGAN WITH CHINA, THE PEW RESEARCH CENTER RELEASED RESULTS OF A SURVEY OF AMERICANS ABOUT THE ISSUE. AMONG THE FINDINGS, 60% OF AMERICANS HAVE AN UNFAVORABLE OPINION OF CHINA. A 14-YEAR HIGH. 26% OF RESPONDENTS HAVE A FAVORABLE OPINION OF THE COUNTRY, AND AS FOR THE STATUS. TIES BETWEEN THE U.S. AND CHINA, A TOTAL OF 53% OF RESPONDENTS SAY THEY ARE BAD. A TOTAL OF 41% SAY THEY ARE GOOD. BACK IN MAY OF 2018, JUST A FEW MONTHS AFTER THE TARIFFS KICKED IN, A PEW CENTER RESEARCH SURVEY FOUND THAT A MAJORITY OF U.S. ADULTS, 56% SAY FREE TRADE AGREEMENTS HAVE BEEN IS A GOOD THING FOR THE COUNTRY AS A WHOLE. WHILE ABOUT 30% SAY THAT THEY HAVE BEEN A BAD THING. LET’S START WITH OUR OWN SURVEY. WHAT ARE YOUR VIEWS OF THE CURRENT BATTLE WITH CHINA AND WHAT AFFECTS ARE YOU SEEING IN YOUR AREA? DANIELLE, LET’S START WITH YOU. AS OF RIGHT NOW, I CAN’T SPEAK FOR ANYBODY OTHER THAN AGRICULTURE, THAT IS WHAT OUR FAMILY DOES. WE PRODUCE CROPS AND CATTLE AND PECANS. WHAT IT HAS DONE TO US IS, ACTUALLY, JUST BEEN THE ICING ON THE CAKE FOR WHAT WAS A REALLY BAD 2018 HARVEST SEASON. AND THEN YOU HAD A, A BAD 2019 PLANNING SEASON. IT WAS THE ICING ON A CAKE. IT WAS NOT JUST, YOU KNOW, OUR SOYBEAN CROPS EVEN THOUGH THAT’S WHAT THE TARIFF IS, THE TARIFF WAR IS ABOUT. IT WAS YOU KNOW, OUR COTTON AND CORN, AS WELL. RYAN? COULD YOU ADD IS TO THAT? IT WAS A PERFECT STORM COMING AFTER THE MIDWEST HAVING A HORRIBLE CROP YEAR, AND THEN WHEN THE TARIFF SITUATION CAME ON, THE QUALITY OF THE CROP WASN’T GREAT. SO, EXPORTS WERE NOT GOING TO THE NORMAL POINTS. THEY FLOODED DOWN THE MISSISSIPPI RIVER, STRAIGHT DOWN LOUISIANA, AND LOUISIANA IS THE BOTTOM OF THE FUNNEL. WHEN THE FUNNEL STOPPED UP, IT AFFECTED EVERYTHING AND STARTED MOVING NORTH. SO LOUISIANA SUFFERED EXPONENTIALLY. WHILE WE HAD THE CLOSEST POINT TO DELIVER OUR PRODUCTS, WE HAD NO PLACE TO GO. WE WERE THERE LEFT SITTING ON OUR HANDS. AND NOTHING TO LOOK FORWARD TO. INCLEMENT WEATHER HURT US, AND THEN AS THE WEATHER HAMMERED US DOWN AS FAR AS THE QUALITY, THE PRICES STARTED FALLING. BUDGETS STARTED GETTING BROKEN. AND IT LEFT US LOOKING TOWARDS THE FUTURE OF WHERE DO WE GO FROM HERE? TELL US ABOUT YOUR FARM. WHERE IS YOUR FARM AND THE NAME OF YOUR FARM? WE ARE UP — DANIELLE AND I OPERATE TORO FARMS. WE ARE LOCATED IN COLFAX, LOUISIANA, THE DEAD CENTER OF THE STATE. WE OPERATE WITH MY PARENTS WHO OPERATE KEYSTONE FARMS. TOGETHER WE FARM RIGHT AT 3,000 ACRES OF CROPS. OF THAT ROAD CROP, 2,000 ACRES OF THAT IS SOYBEANS. SO THAT IS A HUGE PART OF OUR INCOME, AND WHAT WE MAKE OUR LIVING OF. SO WHENEVER THE TARIFFS CAME INTO PLAY, IT REALLY MADE EVERY DAY VOLATILE. JUST THIS WEEK ALONE WE HAVE WATCHED MARKET VOLATILITY, WITH TALKS BETWEEN CHINA GO UP AND DOWN. AND WE HAVE SEEN OVER 25 CENTS A BUSHEL IN THE SOYBEAN MARKET, UP AND DOWN. UP AND DOWN. IT GAINS. IT DROPS. SO YOU REALLY HAVE NO — WE REALLY HAVE NO IDEA, BUDGETING HAS BEEN THROWN OUT OF THE WINDOW. WHILE WE HAD THE BEST BUDGET SET IN THE WORLD WHEN WE STARTED THIS YEAR, THEY ARE NULL AND VOID NOW. WHEN WE LOAD OUR 18 WHEELERS TO GO TO MARKET ON AN AFTERNOON, THE PRICE CAN BE CHANGED BY THE TIME THAT WE DELIVER THE NEXT DAY. OH, WOW. OKAY. THANK YOU FOR SHARING. AT THIS POINT, JIM, I WOULD LIKE TO GET YOUR OPINION. SURE. WELL, I THINK THAT YOU HAVE DONE A GREAT JOB OF SETTING THE STAGE BETWEEN THE MANUFACTURING STORY AND IN THE LEAD-IN AND HAVING DANIELLE AND RYAN UP FIRST. THAT’S A GOOD PICTURE OF WHAT’S GOING ON IN CENTRAL LOUISIANA. NOT ALL OUR MANUFACTURING OPERATIONS ARE DIRECTLY AFFECTED. WHAT WE HAVE SEEN, AND WE HEAR THIS FROM NATIONAL PLAYERS, FROM SITE SELECTORS, IS THAT THE UNCERTAINTY IS HURTING EVERYTHING. WE KNOW OF A NUMBER OF MAJOR INVESTMENTS THAT COULD BE COMING TO LOUISIANA, THAT ARE NOT COMING RIGHT NOW BECAUSE OF THE OVERALL UNCERTAINTY. AND I THINK THAT THE THING THAT WE HEAR MOST OFTEN IS THE BUSINESS SECTOR WANTED THE PRESIDENT WANTED THE NATIONAL GOVERNMENT TO ACT ON CHINA BE AND SOME OTHER UNFAIR TRADE AGREEMENTS. BUT THE SOLUTIONS THAT ARE BEING DRIVEN AT THIS POINT LOOK LIKE HAMMERS WHEN MORE SURGICAL INSTRUMENTS MIGHT BE APPROPRIATE. AND I THINK THAT JUST THE OVERALL LEVEL OF UNCERTAINTY, THE LEFT AND RIGHT ANNOUNCEMENTS IN BACK-TO-BACK WEEKS ARE MORE DAMAGING THAN ANY INDIVIDUAL INTENTION OF WHAT WE ARE TRYING TO ACHIEVE. FIRST, TELL US WHO YOU ARE AND WHO YOU REPRESENT. YEAH, I AM JIM CLINTON WITH CENTRAL LOUISIANA ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT ALLIANCE. WE DO ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT IN TEN PARISHES IN CENTRAL LOUISIANA, AND OUR PRINCIPAL GOAL IS TO DRIVE UP MEDIAN FAMILY INCOME. AND DID YOU FEEL SOMEWHAT, I GUESS, A SENSE OF COMFORT WHEN YOU HEARD OF THE POSSIBLE TRUCE ON FRIDAY? WELL, YES, BUT WE HAVE HEARD THAT A LOT. SO, MY COMFORT IS NOT GOING TO COME UNTIL WE ACHIEVE SOME STABILITY, UNTIL WE KNOW THAT OUR FARMERS AND OUR BUSINESSES CAN PLAN AND HAVE SOME SENSE OF CONFIDENCE THAT THEY CAN MAKE DECISIONS AND HIRE PEOPLE, CREATE JOBS AND OPPORTUNITIES, AND KNOW THAT THEY HAVE A HIGH LIKELIHOOD OF SUCCEEDING. OKAY. AND JOYCE, YOU ARE RIGHT BESIDE HIM IN THE RETAIL SEGMENT. SO TELL US ABOUT YOUR FEELINGS. I HAVE A 72-YEAR-OLD STORE, AND IT WAS THE FURNITURE APPLIANCES AND GIFTS, AND THE PRODUCTS THAT HAVE REALLY BEEN AFFECTED ARE THE PRODUCTS WITH STEEL. THE ADJUSTABLE BED PARTS, PARTS FOR FURNITURE, THE OTHER IS THE MANUFACTURERS OF APPLIANCES THAT EITHER USE PARTS OR IMPORTING PARTS, OR IMPORTING REFRIGERATORS. REFRIDGE RATION IS A BIG — AIR-CONDITIONERS, MANY ARE MADE IN CHINA ALONG WITH COST EFFECTIVE REFRIGERATORS, AND YOU ADD THE TARIFF, AND THEY ARE NOT SO COST EFFECTIVE. THAT MEANS SOMETHING BIG FOR THE CONSUMER. EVERY DAY. AND EVERY DAY A NEW EMAIL WITH HOW THE MANUFACTURERS ARE STRATEGICALLY BUILDING THEIR DEFENSES TO — WE GET PRICE SHEETS NOW THAT TELL US WHAT COUNTRY THE ITEM COMES FROM. THE I WANT VOICES THAT WE GET HAVE A TARIFF ADDED TO THE BOTTOM, IF THERE IS ONE. THE TARIFFS ARE CHARGED SEPARATELY BY ITEM. HOW DOES THAT AFFECT WHAT YOU CHARGE? SO THE CONSUMER PRICES. WE HAVE TO FACTOR IT IN. PERCENTAGES? SAME FORMULAS, JUST YOU START WITH A DIFFERENT BOTTOM LINE. DOES IT GO UP 5%, 10%? 5-10, DEPENDING ON WHAT IT IS. AND THAT COULD GO LIKE ANY DAY? IT COULD BE UP 5% TO 10%? WE RECENTLY RECEIVED OUR CHRISTMAS PACKAGES FOR 10 TEASETS FOR CHILDREN. SOME OF THEM AS MUCH AS $10 AN INCREASE. IF WE, ACTUALLY, DO IT, YOU KNOW. THEN THE QUESTION IS, WILL THE CUSTOMER PAY THAT FOR — $49 FOR A CHILD’S TEA SET. AND SO WE HAVE TO MAKE THAT DECISION AND HOW WE MARKET IT, BUT IT’S AN EVERY DAY THING. ALMOST EVERY DAY THERE IS AN EMAIL REGARDING THE TARIFFS AND HOW DIFFERENT COMPANIES ARE HANDLING IT. WOW. LET’S GO OVER TO THIS SIDE. ANNA, COULD WE GET YOUR PERSPECTIVE? SO FAR, IT HAS NOT AFFECTED ME DIRECTLY, BUT IT COULD IMPACT JOB OPPORTUNITIES IN THE FUTURE, SEEING THAT MANY JOBS ARE PUSHED OVERSEAS. AND BEING SET IN AN UNSTABLE, ECONOMIC ENVIRONMENT. IT COULD BE SHAKY SEEKING JOBS IN THE FUTURE FOR A LOT OF THE YOUTH. OKAY. HOW ABOUT YOU, ROBERT. SO I HAVE GROWN UP WITH BOTH MY DAD AND MY GRANDFATHER. THEY OWN A WHOLESALE COMPANY THAT MOSTLY WHOLESALES DIFFERENT EXPORTING GOODS, BUT LIKE RUBBER BOOTS FOR OIL FILLED WORKERS IN LOUISIANA AND AROUND THE SOUTH IN GENERAL SO JUST TALKING TO THEM RECENTLY THEY HAVE TOLD ME JUST THAT THEY HAVE SEEN BOTH THEIR, YOU KNOW, WHAT THEY ARE PURCHASING FOR MANUFACTURERS, BUT ALSO THE PEOPLE THAT THEY ARE SELLING TO, THEY CAN ONLY — THE QUANTITIES HAVE BEEN LIMITED JUST BECAUSE, I MEAN, YOU CAN ONLY EMPLOY A LIMITED NUMBER OF WORKERS WHEN TARIFFS LIKE THAT HAVE INCREASED OR WHEN THE AGRICULTURAL SYSTEM, THEY HAVE SEEN THE REDUCTION OF HOW MUCH GOODS THEY ARE INTAKING, LIKE MY FAMILY. JIM, COULD WE HEAR FROM YOU? TELL US WHO YOU REPRESENT AND HOW YOU ARE AFFECTED. WELL, I AM A RETIRED FROM LOUISIANA FARM BUREAU, AND CURRENTLY SOMEWHERE FARMING INTERESTS. I GUESS IT’S NOT JUST CHINA. WE ARE DEALING WITH U.S. MCA, CANADA, MEXICO AGREEMENT, WHICH HASN’T BEEN APPROVED YET TO REPLACE NAFTA. WE ARE DEALING WITH THE EUROPEAN UNION, WHICH IS HAVING THEIR OWN PROBLEMS BETWEEN THE REST OF THE UNION AND THE UNITED KINGDOM AND BREXIT. WE JUST SIGNED A TRADE AGREEMENT WITH JAPAN INDIVIDUALLY WITH JAPAN. THAT MEANT THAT WE GOT OUT OF THE TRANS-PACIFIC PARTNERSHIP, SO IT’S NOT JUST THAT. IT’S A WORLD — WE HAVE BEGUN IS A WORLDWIDE TRADE WAR, AND THE UNCERTAINTY, AS WE DISCUSSED EARLIER, IS REALLY JUST AFFECTING PEOPLE THROUGH NO FAULT OF THEIR OWN. THEY ARE DOING WHAT THEY CAN AND AS EFFICIENTLY AS WE CAN, BUT WE ARE BLOWING IN THE WIND HERE. MARK, COULD I GET A PERSPECTIVE? I AM WITH THE INTEGRATIVE PACKAGING CORPORATION, AND WE ARE A MANUFACTURER OF CORRUGATED PRODUCTS. IT’S AFFECTING US ON BOTH SIDES, ON THE SUPPLY CHAIN SIDE, WITH OUR RAW MATERIALS, AND ALSO WITH OUR CUSTOMERS. ON THE SUPPLY CHAIN SIDE, CHINA IS A BIG EXPORTER FOR PAPER, AND WHEN THAT FUNNEL SLOWS DOWN IT IMPACTS PRICES AS WE START LOOKING AT KIND OF LIKE THE FORMS WE ARE TALKING ABOUT WITH RAW MATERIALS. ON THE REVENUE SIDE, WHAT HAPPENS IS WITH THE CUSTOMERS HEAVILY WEIGHED WITH THEIR BUSINESS COMING FROM INTERNATIONAL SOURCES, ESPECIALLY CHINA, WHEN THESE TARIFFS START TAKING AFFECT OF THEIR BUSINESS, IT STARTS AFFECTING OUR BUSINESS. THANK YOU VERY MUCH, THAT’S ALL THE TIME WE HAVE FOR THIS PORTION OF THE SHOW, WHEN WE RETURN WE WILL FURTHER EXPLORE THE TARIFF TENSIONS WITH A PANEL OF EXPERTS. WELCOME BACK TO “LOUISIANA PUBLIC SQUARE.” TONIGHT WE ARE EXPLORING THE TRADE WAR WITH CHINA. JOINING US NOW IS OUR PANEL OF EXPERTS. STEPHEN BARNES IS THE DIRECTOR OF THE KATHLEEN BLANCO PUBLIC POLICY CENTER, AN ASSOCIATE PROFESSOR OF ECONOMICS AT THE UNIVERSITY OF LOUISIANA AT LAFAYETTE. DR. BARNES ALSO SERVES ON THE REVENUE ESTIMATE CONFERENCE, THAT PANEL THAT SETS INCOME PROJECTIONS USED TO CREATE THE STATE BUDGET, ANDY BROWN IS THE ASSISTANT COMMODITY DIRECTOR AND NATIONAL AFFAIRS COORDINATOR FOR THE LOUISIANA FARM BUREAU FEDERATION, AMONG OTHER COMMODITIES, MR. BROWN TRACKS THE ISSUES RELATED TO SOYBEANS, WHEAT, AND FEED GRAIN, FORESTRY, AND WATER RESOURCES. AND SCOTT POOLE SERVES AS CHIEF OPERATING OFFICER FOR ROYOMARTIN, AN ALEXANDRIA-BASED WOOD PRODUCTS BUSINESS. HE WAS THE PAST CHAIRMAN OF THE MANUFACTURER’S COUNCIL AND SERVES ON THE EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE OF THE LOUISIANA ASSOCIATION OF BUSINESS AND INDUSTRY. AND SAUL NEWSOME IS AN ATTORNEY AND FOUNDER OF NEWSOM INTERNATIONAL LAW, PROVIDING LEGAL SUPPORT FOR INTERNATIONAL COMMERCE AND INVESTMENT. HE WAS APPOINTED TO THE DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE TO THE LOUISIANA DISTRICT EXPORT COUNCIL AND SITS ON THE OUTREACH COMMITTEE. BEFORE WE GO TO THE AUDIENCE QUESTIONS, IF EACH OF YOU COULD BRIEFLY ANSWER FROM YOUR PERSPECTIVE HOW THE STATE IS FARING IN THE CURRENT TRADE WAR WITH CHINA. WELL, I THINK THAT NO DOUBT THAT LOUISIANA HAS BEEN NEGATIVELY AFFECTED. WE FELT THE IMPACT OF THE TRADE WAR. TARIFFS CAN BE LINKED TO SPECIFIC INDUSTRIES, BUT AS TIME PASSES, WE SEE THOSE EFFECTS RIPPLING THROUGH THE ECONOMY AND TAKING HOLD IN A BROADER WAY. THAT’S BOTH ACROSS BUSINESS, AS WELL AS THE IMPACT TO CONSUMERS IN THE MARKETPLACE. OKAY, MR. POOLE? WELL, IN OUR INDUSTRY, THE MARKET IS BIFURCATED BETWEEN SOFT AND HARDWOOD, AND MOST OF THE SOFT WOOD PRODUCTS ARE SOLD DOMESTICICALLY. DOMESTIC — DOMESTIC. SOFT WOOD IS DIFFERENT FROM HARDWOOD. A REARING WE WERE EXPORTING AT 2 BILLION TO CHINA, TODAY IT’S 1.. 1 — IT’S 1.3, AND THAT REPRESENTS MANY JOBS AND A HUGE PART OF THE STATE’S RESOURCE. MR. BROWN? FROM THE AGRICULTURAL PERSPECTIVE, I THINK THE TERM “TIP OF THE SPEAR” WOULD BE A WAY TO ANALYZE HOW LOUISIANA IS FACING THESE TARIFFS IN THIS TRADE WAR. THERE IS NO MARKET THAT’S LARGER FOR MANY OF OUR COMMODITIES THAN CHINA, WHICH IS, WHICH HAS HAD THE LARGEST TARIFFS IMPOSED FROM THE TRADE WAR. SO WHEN YOU LOOK AT THE MAIN COMMODITIES IN LOUISIANA, NUMBER ONE, BEING SOYBEANS FROM A ROAD CROP PERSPECTIVE, CHINA DOMINATES THAT AT 60% OF THE CONSUMPTION OF THE WORLD’S SOYBEANS, WHEN YOU COMPARE THAT ALSO WITH THE MARKET FACILITATION PROGRAM, WHICH IS THE TRADE AID PROGRAM THAT THE USDA PROVIDED OUR FARMERS, YOU CAN SEE FROM THE RATES OF THAT PROGRAM THAT LOUISIANA IS TOWARDS THE TOP OF THAT LIST AS FAR AS THE RATES GO. SO WHILE THAT’S GOOD TO HAVE THAT PROGRAM WHEN YOU ARE AT THE TOP OF THE LIST FOR AN AID PROGRAM, THAT MEANS YOU ARE GETTING HURT THE HARDEST. MR. NEWSOME. THE BIG THING IS UNCERTAINTIES. A LOT OF LOUISIANA BUSINESSES, AS THEY ARE LOOKING TO EITHER GROW THEIR EXPORT PRODUCTS ARE OR LOOKING TO PLAN THE YEAR THEY ARE LOOKING FOR PREDICTABILITY AS FAR AS THE REGULATION OR PREDICTABILITY AS TO WHAT THE MARKET WILL DO AND THE TRADE TALKS AND THE TRADE AGREEMENTS HAVE BEEN ANNOUNCED AND HAVE FALLEN THROUGH, AND IT IS NOT ONLY AFFECTING TRADE, BUT ALSO REGULATION AFFECTING FOREIGN INVESTMENT IN THE UNITED STATES, PARTICULARLY, IN CRITICAL AREAS IN LOUISIANA DEALING WITH THE MARITIME PORTS AND OUR ENERGY SECTOR, SO THAT SORT OF UNPREDICTABILITY IS CHALLENGING THE BUSINESSES, AND THEY ARE TRYING TO PLAN AND TRY AND GROW, AND IT’S HARD WITH NOT KNOWING WHAT THE MARKET IS GOING TO DO AND NOT KNOWING WHAT REGULATION AND THE ADDITIONAL RED TAPE THAT THEY ARE GOING TO HAVE TO GO THROUGH. OKAY. AND LET’S GO BACK AND TALK TO THE AUDIENCE MEMBERS NOW. YOUR PARTICULAR PERSPECTIVE, HOW HAS THIS AFFECTED YOU? TELL ME WHO YOU ARE AND WHO YOU REPRESENT. THANK YOU. I AM JIM HARPER, IS A FARMER FROM CHENEYVILLE, REPRESENTING THE LOUISIANA FARM BUREAU. I WILL GIVE YOU A CHINA PERSPECTIVE, IN 2017 WE SHIPPED OVER 700 MILLION SOYBEANS TO CHINA. IN 2018 WE SHIPPED 21 MILLION. OUR COTTON EXPORTS TO CHINA ARE PROJECTED TO BE CUT IN HALF. WE HAVE SOLD CHINA NO POULTRY SINCE 2015, AND WE HAVE A 47% TARIFF ON U.S. BEEF GOING INTO CHINA. WE FINALLY GOT TO, THE CHINESE TO AGREE TO GIVE US A CHANCE OF SELLING SOME RICE BEFORE THE PARISH TOOK — BEFORE THE TARIFFS TOOK PLACE. IF WE COULD JUST GET 10% OF THE IMPORT MARKET IT WILL BE A 500,000 TON AMOUNT THAT WE COULD SHIP TO THEM. I THINK MOST FARMERS SUPPORT THE ADMINISTRATION TO GET CHINA TO LIVE UP TO THE AGREEMENTS THEY SIGN BUT IT IS CAUSING A LOT OF PAIN IN AGRICULTURE, AND I HOPE THAT SOON WE CAN GET AN AGREEMENT. CAN YOU TELL US WHAT IS YOUR QUESTION FOR THE EXPERTS? MY QUESTION IS HOW, HOW HAS THE TARIFFS AFFECTED THE PORTS OF BATON ROUGE AND NEW ORLEANS? WELL, I CAN JUMP IN FROM A FARMER’S PERSPECTIVE OR AGRICULTURAL PERSPECTIVE. 40% OF THE COMMODITIES PRODUCED IN THIS NATION FLOW THROUGH THE PORTS HERE IN LOUISIANA. SO WHEN YOU LOOK AT THAT AND THE IMPACT THAT HAS NOT JUST HERE IN LOUISIANA BUT NATION-WIDE, AND TO SEE THE REDUCTION FROM — THAT YOU SPOKE OF, OF 19 BILLION IN 2017 TO THE VALUE DOWN TO 9 BILLION IN 2018, AND WE’RE 1.3 BILLION BEHIND THAT PACE THIS YEAR. YOU MULTIPLY THAT OUT WITH 40% OF THE COMMODITIES IN THE NATION, AND THAT’S A VERY LARGE BILLIONS OF DOLLARS OF IMPACT, SO THAT WAS VERY EVIDENT IN 2018, WHICH I THINK THAT WE HAVE REFERENCED HERE TONIGHT. WHEN YOU HAVE A PLUG IN THE BOTTOM OF THE FUNNEL, AS HE SPOKE OF, THAT BACKS UP FOR THE WHOLE NATION, AND SO THAT CONTINUES TO PROVE TRUE IN 2019, AND WILL CONTINUE SO UNTIL WE HAVE RESOLUTION. SO WE WOULD LIKE TO TALK WITH YOU, TELL US WHO YOU ARE AND WHO YOU REPRESENT AND TELL US YOUR CONCERNS AND THE QUESTION FOR THE PANEL. YES, MA’AM. I AM SANDRA MCCAIN, THE DIRECTOR OF ENGLAND AIR PARK, ENGLAND AIR PARK WAS CREATED WHEN THE FORMER ENGLAND AIRFORCE BASE CLOSED. SO WE WERE THE ENTITY THAT IT TOOK OVER ALL THE ASSETS AND OUR PRIMARY MISSION IS ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT. SO WHERE WE’VE BEEN LOOKING AT THIS ISSUE IS ARE THERE WAYS THAT WE CAN HELP EDUCATE THE BUSINESS COMMUNITY BECAUSE OUR JOB IS TO PROTECT AND GROW THE ECONOMY HERE BUT CAN WE MITT MITIGATETHE TARIFFS, SO WE HOLDE FOREIGN TRADE FOR THE PARISH AND ARE WHEN WAYS WE CAN WORK WITH MANUFACTURERS IMPACTED TO CREATE SUBZONES, AND THAT WOULD ALLOW THEM AT A MINIMUM A CASH FLOW OPPORTUNITY BECAUSE THEY COULD DELAY PAYMENT OF THE TARIFFS UNTIL THE GOODS LEAVE THE TRADE ZONE. PERHAPS YOU COULD REDUCE THEM BECAUSE THEY WOULD NOT HAVE TO PAY THEM ON SCRAP AS OPPOSED TO THE FULL PRICE, SO THAT’S BEEN OUR APPROACH IS WHAT CAN WE DO TO MITIGATE THE IMPACT. WHAT IS YOUR QUESTION? MY QUESTION, IT MAY BE FOR THE LAWYER ON THE PANEL, WHAT STRATEGIES ARE YOU SEEING THAT BEING EMPLOYED, THE MITIGATION STRATEGIES THROUGHOUT THE STATE OF LOUISIANA AND WHAT TYPE OF STRATEGIES ARE YOU SEEING? YES. THAT’S A GREAT POINT, THE MITIGATION STRATEGY IS A GREAT WAY TO SOFTEN THE BLOW OF SOME OF THESE NEW REGULATIONS, AND TAKING ADVANTAGE OF THE FREE TRADE ZONES, AND DIVERSIFYING THE MARKETS. WE HAVE SEEN THIS WHERE EXPORTERS ARE LOOKING TO FIND NEW CONSUMERS TO TRY AND FIND NEW MARKETS THAT THEY HAD NOT BEEN IN. THERE IS A LOT OF FOLKS THAT, BECAUSE OF THE TRADE TENSIONS THAT ARE NOW BEING SHORT-FALLED ON SOME OF THEIR COMMODITIES, AND SO THERE IS OPPORTUNITIES FOR LOUISIANIANS AND AMERICANS TO EXPORT INTO NEW AREAS TO FIND AND DIVERSIFY WHERE THEY ARE SELLING THE PRODUCTION. THE OTHER THING IS TO TAKE ADVANTAGE OF THE U.S. EXPORT INCENTIVES. THERE ARE INCENTIVES THAT EXIST THROUGH THE TAX CUT AND JOBS ACT PASSED IN 2017, AND OTHER EXPORTING INCENTIVES THAT HAVE BEEN AROUND FOR DECADES TO TRY AND INCENTIVIZE AND REALLY ASSIST EXPORTS FROM THE U.S., AND PERHAPS, OFFSET ANY OF THE LOSSES COMING AS A RESULT OF THE TARIFFS. DR. BARNES, COULD YOU ADD TO THAT? SURE, I THINK THAT YOUR QUESTION HIGHLIGHTS SOMETHING THAT IS WORTH EMPHASIZING, WHICH IS ONE OF THE THINGS THAT HAS MADE ALL THESE RECENT CHANGES, PARTICULARLY, CHALLENGING IS THE PACE AT WHICH RADICAL CHANGES ARE HAPPENING. SO, PEOPLE LIKE YOURSELF WHO ARE WORKING TO ATTRACT BUSINESSES AND HELP, AND HELP BUSINESSES NAVIGATE THE CHANGING POLICIES, IT TAKES TIME TO LEARN EXACTLY WHAT THE RULES WILL BE AND EXACTLY WHAT DOES APPLY AND WHAT WE HAVE SEEN IS, YOU KNOW, FAIRLY QUICKLY MAYBE THINGS END UP GETTING PULLED OFF THAT LIST. IT HAS BEEN A TUMULTUOUS TIME WITH A LOT OF CHANGES. SOME IN THE DIRECTION OF MORE TARIFFS AND SOMETIMES PULLING BACK, WHICH I THINK IS PART OF WHAT’S MADE IT SO MUCH HARDER TO PLAN, ESPECIALLY FOR LARGER INVESTMENTS TO GROW THE ECONOMY OVER TIME. ANYBODY ELSE ON THE PANEL? A LOT OF OUR INTERNATIONAL CONTRACTS, THERE IS FINE PRINT THAT SAYS IF THERE IS AN IMPOSITION OF TARIFFS ON THE PRODUCT, THE BAR IS RESPONSIBLE SO WHEN YOU MENTION EDUCATION AROUND THE SUBJECT, I THINK IT’S VERY IMPORTANT THAT WE MAKE PEOPLE AWARE OF THE FACT THAT JUST BECAUSE YOU WERE OKAY YESTERDAY DOESN’T MEAN THAT YOU ARE OKAY TODAY. AND GUESS WHAT, IF THERE IS A DUTY OR TARIFF ON THAT PRODUCT OR COMPONENT, OR PIECE OF MACHINERY, IT FALLS ON THE BUYER, SO WHAT YOU THOUGHT THAT YOU HAD YOU MAY NOT HAVE NEXT TIME. OKAY. SO PHILLIP, COULD YOU GIVE US YOUR PERSPECTIVE ON HOW IT AFFECTED YOU AND YOUR QUESTION FOR THE PANEL? I AM PHILLIP, A RICE AND CRAWFISH FARMER FROM MARKSFIELD. AS FAR AS THE TARIFF, ANYONE IN AGRICULTURE HAS BEEN NEGATIVELY IMPACTED. NO DOUBT ABOUT IT SO REINFORCE THE, WHAT THE SPEAKER SAID BEFORE, THAT IN AGRICULTURE, WE ARE PRICE TAKERS, NOT PRICE MAKERS, SO AS COMPARED TO SOMEONE THAT’S IN THE MANUFACTURING BUSINESS, PRODUCING A PRODUCT THAT THEY CAN MAYBE TACK ON AN EXTRA 4%, 5% TO TIED THEMSELVES OVER, WE DON’T HAVE THAT OPTION. I CAN’T CALL THE FARMERS RICE MEAL AND SAY I NEED MORE MONEY ON THE RICE BECAUSE OF THE TARIFF. AND I KNOW THAT EVEN IN THE BUSINESS SITUATION, THAT THAT’S NOT SUSTAINABILITY. IN THE LONG-TERM BUT THE SHORT-TERM, IT GIVES YOU A FOOTING TO, YOU KNOW, TO KEEP AN. SO THAT’S ONE OF THE BIGGEST OBSTACLES THAT WE ENDURE IS THAT WE ARE AT THE MERCY OF THE MARKETS. SECOND THING CHINA, THE GOVERNMENT OF CHINA IS NOT OUR FRIEND. THEY HAVE BEEN ABUSING — THEY ARE NOT THE ONLY ONES, THERE IS SOME OTHER COUNTRIES THAT WE ARE NOT GOING TO TALK ABOUT THERE IS OTHER COUNTRIES THAT HAVE BEEN BAD ACTORS WHEN IT COMES TO TRADING, AND THIS IS THE FIRST ADMINISTRATION THAT HAS BEEN ABLE TO HOLD THEM OR ATTEMPT TO HOLD THEM ACCOUNTABLE. THIS IS SOMETHING THAT HASN’T HAPPENED OVERNIGHT. WE’VE BEEN HAVING TRADE ISSUES WITH OTHER COUNTRIES FOR YEARS. I HAVE TO GIVE THEM THE CREDIT THAT THEY HAVE BEEN ABLE TO TRY TO STEP UP AND DO THE RIGHT THING. IT’S A BITTER PILL TO SWALLOW TODAY BUT WE HOPE IN THE LONG RUN WE ARE GOING TO SEE RELIEF. SO DO YOU BELIEVE IT WILL HELP? I MEAN, WHAT ABOUT THE PEOPLE WHO ARE GOING OUT OF BUSINESS? WHAT ABOUT PEOPLE WHO ARE CLOSING SHOP BECAUSE OF THE TARIFFS BECAUSE THEY CANNOT AFFORD TO STAY OPEN. I FEEL FOR THEM. AND THAT’S NOT JUST IN BUSINESS. AGRICULTURE IS FACED WITH THE SAME THING. THERE IS PEOPLE HERE TODAY THAT WHEN THEY TRY TO DO THEIR CROP LOAN AND BUDGET, LIKE HE TALKED ABOUT FOR THE UPCOMING YEAR THEY ARE NOT GOING TO CASH NO HE AND THEY MIGHT NOT FARM NEXT YEAR, SO THAT’S WHY WE’VE BEEN FORTUNATE THAT WE HAVE HAD SOME GOVERNMENT ASSISTANCE THROUGH THE MFP PROGRAM TO HELP TO TIE US OVER TO MAKE THE ENDS MEET. TO WHERE WE CAN FARM AGAIN NEXT YEAR. DO YOU HAVE A QUESTION FOR THE PANEL? MY QUESTION THAT I THINK THAT THE GENTLEMAN MAY BE ANSWERED WAS YOU KEEP HEARING ABOUT THE BILLIONS OF DOLLARS COLLECTED FROM THE TARIFFS, AND MY QUESTION IS, CAN SOME OF THAT MONEY BE USED TO HELP CREATE OR ENHANCE OTHER MARK FOR ALL AFFECTED COMMODITIES? DR. BARNES? SURE. I THINK THAT, YOU KNOW, TALKING ABOUT THE REVENUES GENERATED THROUGH TARIFFS IS A USEFUL THING TO KEEP IN MIND AS AN IMPORTANT INGREDIENT IN THIS PUZZLE. IT CERTAINLY IS TRUE THAT WHEN THE TARIFF IS IMPOSED, THAT’S GOING TO SHIFT, YOU KNOW, WHO IS SELLING IN THE MARKET, AND SHIFT THE PRICES THAT THE CONSUMERS ARE PAYING. AND BUT ALONG WITH THAT SHIFTING IS USUALLY, GENERALLY, AN ADJUSTMENT IN HOW MUCH IS EXCHANGED IN THE MARKET. SO, WHAT WE SEE WITH THAT IS TYPICALLY THE SHIFTING FROM INTERNATIONAL PRODUCERS TO DOMESTIC PRODUCERS, THAT CAN BE BENEFICIAL TO CERTAIN INDUSTRIES. BUT COMES WITH THAT IS CHANGES IN PRICES WHICH AFFECT OTHER INDUSTRIES AS WELL AS CONSUMERS. AND AS A WHOLE, WHEN WE LOOK AT IT ECONOMY-WIDE, THAT CHANGE IN PRICES AND THAT CHANGE IN ACTIVITY TENDS TO BE A BIGGER DECREASE FOR CONSUMERS IN TERMS OF THE PURCHASING LESS, THAN THE REVENUES GENERATED THROUGH THE TARIFFS, SO THERE IS SOMETHING WE CALL A DEAD WEIGHT LOSS, AND THAT’S LOST ECONOMIC VALUE BECAUSE WE HAVE INSERTED THIS TAX OF SORTS IN THE MIDDLE OF THE MARKET. NOW, THAT BEING SAID THERE IS A SUBSTANTIAL AMOUNT OF REVENUE BEING GENERATED, AND I THINK THAT IT MAKES SENSE AT A MINIMUM TO THINK OF HOW WE CAN TARGET THOSE BACK TO THOSE MOST AFFECTED BY THE TARIFFS, BUT THE REAL ANSWER IS, FIND A WAY TO GET THE TARIFFS OUT OF THE WAY SO THAT WE CAN REALLY LET THE MARKET DO ITS JOB. MR. NEWSOME, CAN YOU ADD ANYTHING TO IT? IS THERE ANY LEGAL WAY THAT YOU CAN FIND OUT WHERE THAT MONEY IS AND HAVE IT CHANNELED IN A WAY THAT WOULD HELP THE AREA FOLKS? THERE MAY BE A PROCESS FOR THAT, AND IN FACT, THE AID TO THE LOUISIANA FARMERS IS THE FIRST INSTANCE THAT WE HAVE SEEN FOR SOME OF THAT COMING BACK TO SOME OF THE FOLKS AFFECTED. AND WE EXPECT TO SEE THAT FROM THE OTHER INDUSTRIES, I KNOW THAT FOR IMPORTERS OF STEEL THERE WAS A PROCESS TO TRY AND GET A WAIVER TO ALLOW OTHER COUNTRIES TO BRING IN OR TO DIRECTLY IMPORT, AND TO BE ABLE TO IMPORT THAT DUTY-FREE SO THERE ARE PROCESSES THAT ARE FOR RELIEF, BUT AS FAR AS ACTUALLY GETTING ACCESS TO THE DOLLARS COMING BACK, THE FARMERS [INAUDIBLE] ROBERT, LET’S GO TO YOU, TELL US HOW YOU’VE BEEN AFFECTED, FIRST, TELL US WHO YOU ARE AND HOW YOU’VE BEEN AFFECTED AND YOUR QUESTION. I AM ROBERT DUNCAN FROM [INAUDIBLE] PARISH. ME AND MY FAMILY, WE FARM 450 ACRES OF SOYBEANS, AND WE HAVE BEEF CATTLE, AS WELL. THE BIGGEST THING FOR US IN 2016, WE WERE FARMING SHY OF 80G FARMER IT WAS TOUCH TO GET THAT LOAN, IN 2018 WITH THE MARKETS, IT WAS ALMOST DETRIMENTAL. WE HAD TO GET ALL — GET AWAY FROM THE RENT LAND, AND PICK UP JUST WHAT WE OWNED. SO IT HURT US. WITH THE MARKETS, THE TARIFFS THE WAY THAT THEY WERE, WE HAD A DECENT CROP BUT COULDN’T SELL IT. BECAUSE OF THE TARIFFS, AND SO WE ENDED UP LEAVING 50% OF OTHER ACRES UNHARVESTED IN THE FIELD, INSURANCE HELPED A BIT BUT NOT ENOUGH. THE PAYMENTS WERE GREAT ON HARVESTING ACRES SINCE BEEN REVISED TO PLANT ACRES, AND BUT, YOU KNOW, IT CAN ALWAYS BE MORE, BUT I BELIEVE THAT A NECESSARY EVIL. WE JUST HAVE GOT TO GET THROUGH IT. YOUR QUESTION FOR THE PANEL? SO AS MR. HARPER — IT WAS CLOSE TO HIS QUESTION — AS FAR AS THE PORTS IN BATON ROUGE AND IN NEW ORLEANS, HOW IS IT GOING TO AFFECT IN THE LONG RUN? ARE WE GOING TO FEEL A LONG RUN EFFECT WITH PERSONNEL? ARE THEY GOING TO BE ABLE TO REPLACE THOSE PEOPLE? DO THEY HAVE TO LAY ANYBODY OFF? WITH THE CUTBACKS? ARE THEY GOING TO BE ABLE TO REPLACE THEM. WILL IT AFFECT THEM IN THE LONG RUN? JUST LAST WEEK I WAS ABLE TO MEET WITH THE PORT ASSOCIATION OF LOUISIANA, AND THE PORT OF SOUTH LOUISIANA WAS THERE, AND THEY WERE SPEAKING ABOUT THIS HEALTH OF THE PORTS, AND THANKFULLY, BECAUSE OF WHERE LOUISIANA IS LOCATED, GEOGRAPHICALLY, AND WE HAVE THE HEART OF THE MISSISSIPPI COMING DOWN THROUGH THE CENTER OF THE COUNTRY, WE ARE IN A POSITION WHERE COMMODITIES, REGARDLESS OF WHETHER THEY ARE OUT OF LOUISIANA OR OUT OF THE MIDWEST, IT’S THE CHEAPEST PLACE TO EXPORT OUT OF, SO THANKFULLY, LOUISIANA STILL, IT WILL REMAIN HEALTHY BECAUSE IT’S STILL THE CHEAPEST PLACE TO EXPORT OUT OF. GOING TO THE EAST OR WEST IS MORE EXPENSIVE SO WE — I EXPECT, AND I THINK THAT THE PROJECTIONS WERE THAT THEY WILL CONTINUE TO BE HEALTHY AND SHOULD WEATHER THE STORM ALL RIGHT. AND THANKFULLY THE PORTS OVER TO THE LEFT ARE DEALING WITH THE LNG, AND SOME OF THOSE EXPORTS GROWING NOW, AND SO AS A WHOLE, THE PORTS ARE DOING, ARE FARING BETTER OFF THAN SADLY MANY OF THE FARMERS IN THE STATE. MR. BROWN WOULD YOU LIKE TO ADD TO THAT? YES, I WOULD SAY THAT THE CONCERN WOULD BE MORE GLOBALLY AS FAR AS RELATIONSHIPS, THE BUSINESS RELATIONSHIPS WITH OTHER COUNTRIES. THEIR DEPENDENTS AND THEIR FAITH IN AMERICAN PRODUCTS AND AMERICAN COMMODITIES, WE’RE PROUD, I KNOW, AS FARMERS HERE, IN THE ROOM, OF THE PRODUCTS THAT THEY PROVIDE, THE SAFETY, THE COST, AND SO, THERE IS A LOT OF FARMERS DOLLARS SPENT. THE TAXPAYERS’ DOLLARS TO MAINTAIN THOSE BUSINESS RELATIONSHIPS, YOU LOOK AT PROBABLY THE BIGGEST COMPETITOR FOR AG COMMODITIES, NATION TO NATION WOULD BE BRAZIL, AND YOU SEE A LOT OF CHINESE INVESTMENT IN BRAZIL TO BRING THEM UP TO SPEED TO HAVE THE INFRASTRUCTURE, TO HAVE THE PORT STRUCTURE, TO BE ABLE TO SHIP THE PRODUCTS THAT THEY GROW, AND THE LONGER THAT A TRADE WAR LIKE THIS GOES ON, THE MORE OUR RELATIONSHIPS DETERIORATE, AND WHILE THEY HAVE THE OPPORTUNITY TO CATCH UP AND BUILD THAT INFRASTRUCTURE TO BRING THEM TO A MORE COMPETITIVE ADVANTAGE AGAINST THE UNITED STATES. SO, WHILE DOMESTICICALLY WE CAN MAINTAIN THAT THROUGH OTHER PRODUCTS, IT’S THE INTERNATIONAL RELATIONSHIPS THAT REALLY SUFFER. THAT’S A GREAT POINT, AND AS THE RELATIONSHIPS START TO GROW, IT’S GOING TO BE HARDER TO SHIFT BACK BECAUSE THERE IS A COST ASSOCIATED WITH SHIPPING, SO AS COMPANIES START TO REALIZE THAT PERHAPS INVESTING OR DOING TRADE WITH ONE COUNTRY IN A LARGE, YOU KNOW, IN A LARGE QUANTITY, IS RISKY BUSINESS, SO IT MAKES SENSE, JUST LIKE IT WOULD IN ANY OTHER INVESTMENT. SO BASICALLY, BECAUSE THEY CANNOT GET PRODUCTS FROM US THEY START RELATIONSHIPS WITH OTHER COUNTRIES. RIGHT. AND IT WOULD BE HARD TO GET THEM BACK. POSSIBLY. RIGHT. AS MR. MONROE SPOKE OF EARLIER, THIS IS NOT JUST A SINGLE NATION THAT WE ARE HAVING THIS ISSUE WITH. THERE IS — THE FOUR BIGGEST TRADING PARTNERS FOR AGRICULTURE IN THE WORLD ARE ALL FACING DISPUTES WHEN IT COMES TO TRADE. SO WHEN WE HAVE THINGS LIKE THE U.S., MCA, THE MEXICO AND CANADA AGREEMENT, JAPAN DEAL, NEGOTIATIONS WITH THE E.U., THAT’S WHERE A LOT OF THE FRUSTRATION COMES FROM, DOMESTICALLY, WE CANNOT COUNT ON OUR OWN CONGRESS TO PASS TRADE DEALS LIKE THE U.S., MCA THAT IS A NO-BRAINER WITH THE TWO LARGEST TRADING PARTNERS, SO THERE IS THINGS THAT WE CAN DO DOMESTICALLY TO RELIEVE THIS PRESSURE, BUT WHEN POLITICS GET IN THE WAY WE REALLY SEE FRUSTRATION IF OUR FARMING MEMBERS. JOYCE, I WOULD LIKE TO GET YOUR QUESTION FROM A RETAILER’S PERSPECTIVE. SO THE QUESTION, THE QUESTION IS, FOR THE FORESTRY FOLKS, WHERE DO YOU SEE OUR FORESTS, AND OUR WOOD GOING, AND IS IT COMING BACK? OR NOW WE ARE SEEING SO MUCH — SO MANY PRODUCTS WITH RECLAIMED WOOD, AND THAT’S BECAUSE THERE IS NOT, NOT A FLOW SOME HOW, SO. WELL, I AM SURE THAT YOU REMEMBER WHEN THERE WAS A TREMENDOUS AMOUNT OF MANUFACTURE MANUFACTURING ON THE EAST COAST, YOU GO TO SOUTH CAROLINA AND NORTH CAROLINA, THAT’S WHERE MOST OF THE FURNITURE CAME FROM. THAT INDUSTRY IS GONE, AND IT WENT TO CHINA. AND A LOT OF IT WENT TO CHINA. SO WHAT WE’RE SEEING TODAY AS AN EXAMPLE, LET’S TAKE THE WOOD PANELS THAT GO INTO UPHOLSTERED FURNITURE, IT IS STITCHED AND SEWN IN CHINA AND SHIPPED BACK BUT DUE TO THE TARIFFS THE CHINESE COMPANIES ALONG WITH AMERICAN COMPANIES ARE GOING TO VIETNAM AND ESTABLISHING THE MANUFACTURING SITES, AND THEN SHIPPING IT TO THE U.S. WHAT THAT DOES IS INCREASES THE PRICE AND YOU LOSE THE CHAIN OF CUSTODY, AND REALLY, YOUR PRICES ARE GOING TO GO UP AND YOUR SALES SHOULD GO DOWN AS A RESULT OF THAT. UNFORTUNATELY. AS FAR AS THE CHAIN OF CUSTODY ON THE HARDWOOD LUMBER, IT’S DIMINISHED SO TREMENDOUSLY THAT THEY HAVE TURNED TO OTHER COUNTRIES TO SUPPLY THOSE. AND THAT MARKET MAY NOT COME BACK, AT LEAST OVER THE NEXT DECADE BECAUSE WHAT WE ARE TALKING ABOUT, TRANSITIONING FROM COUNTRY TO COUNTRY, AND OTHER HARDWOOD SUPPLIERS ARE STEPPING IN TO FUEL THAT ROLE, AND UNFORTUNATELY OUR PRODUCTION, WE HAVE TO FIND OTHER MARKETS AND END USERS TO COPY THAT SAME SPACE. THEY ARE NOT ALWAYS READILY AVAILABLE. WHAT HAPPENED NO THAT NORTH CAROLINA MARKET? THEY LOST — THEY LOST TO A CHEAPER LABOR MARKET. AND PROBABLY TO SOME DEGREE REGULATIONS, BUT NORMALLY, THOSE JOBS FOLLOWED THE LABOR MARKET, THE CHEAPER LABOR IS REALLY — THEY WENT TO AND IT WENT OFF THE SHORE AND A LOT OF OUR LUMBER WENT OFF-SHORE LIKE I MENTIONED EARLIER. 2 BILLION ANNUALLY WAS BEING SHIPPED TO CHINA, AND NOW THAT’S ALMOST CUT IN HALF. WOW. MARK, DO YOU HAVE A QUESTION FOR OUR PANEL? YES. I THINK THAT — I AM PIGGYBACKING OFF WHAT THE OTHER GENTLEMAN SAID ABOUT THIS SITUATION THAT WE’VE BEEN IN, AND I JUST HEARD WHAT YOU SAID, AND I AGREE WITH THE FURNITURE INDUSTRY. I HAVE SEEN THE SAME THING IN THE STEEL INDUSTRY. I AM FROM THE MIDWEST THAT, AND WE SAW THAT WITH STEEL BEING UNBALANCED AND LOSING THAT MARKET IN THAT AREA. AS WE SEE THE CHANGES MADE, AND AS AN ATTEMPT TO RIGHT THIS WRONG, SO TO SPEAK, BUT WE SEE THE EFFECTS THAT IT’S HAVING, AND EVEN THOUGH, YOU KNOW, IT MIGHT BE EASIER FOR SOME PEOPLE, YOU KNOW, NOT DIRECTLY EXPERIENCING IT BUT FOR THE FOLKS EXPERIENCING IT AND GOING OUT OF BUSINESS, IT’S AN ISSUE. IF SOMETHING NEEDS TO BE DONE NOW, AND I WOULD LIKE TO GET THE PANELS’ OUTLOOK ON HOW YOU THINK THIS COULD HAVE BEEN DONE WHEN SOMETHING NEEDED TO BE DONE BUT MAYBE WHAT HAS BEEN DONE, AND I WILL PIGGY-BACK WITH WHAT JIM SAID, MORE OF A HAMMER THAN A SURGICAL TOOL. WHAT’S YOUR COMMENTS ON THAT AND HOW DO YOU LOOK AT IT? DR. BARNES. SURE, I THINK THAT THAT’S A REALLY GOOD QUESTION. I THINK THAT I HAVE HEARD COMMENTS ALONG THE WAY ABOUT THE IMPORTANCE OF DOING SOMETHING AND I CAN APPRECIATE THAT, THAT THERE CLEARLY HAS BEEN A NEED TO ADDRESS SOME MISBEHAVIORS, SO TO SPEAK, ESPECIALLY ON THE PART OF CHINA, WITH OUR INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY. AND I THINK THAT DOING SO REQUIRES DEVELOPING THOUGHTFUL POLICIES, AND AS AN ECONOMIST, WHEN I AM LOOKING AT ANY QUESTION, I AM OFTEN SORT OF CHALLENGING MYSELF TO NOT JUST THINK ABOUT THE DIRECT AFFECT OF THE POLICY BUT HOW ARE PEOPLE GOING TO RESPOND TO THAT. AND WHO ELSE IS GOING TO BE AFTER THE BREAKED. I THINK THAT A LOT OF WHAT WE TALKED ABOUT TODAY WHEN WE THINK ABOUT TARIFFS AS A TOOL, YOU KNOW, WE CAN THINK OF THE FIRST TARIFF, REALLY, BEING ON IMPORTS OF STEEL. THAT WAS A COMMODITY WHERE THERE WERE CONCERNS ABOUT DUMPING STEEL ON THE INTERNATIONAL MARKET, AND SO YEAH, THAT MIGHT BENEFIT STEEL PRODUCERS HERE IN AMERICA. BUT, WHO ELSE IS AFTER THE BREAKED? , WHO ELSE ISAFFECTED. THE BROADER SIDE, NOT TO MENTION THE CONSUMER SIDE OF THE EQUATION SO ADDRESSING THE CHALLENGES REQUIRES PINPOINTING WHAT ARE THE MOST PRESSING THINGS THAT NEED TO BE FIXED AND DEVELOPING TARGETED POLICIES THAT REALLY GET SPECIFICALLY AT THAT, RATHER THAN, I THINK, THE APPROACH HAS BEEN TAKEN THAT’S MORE GENERAL — NEGOTIATION USING LEVERAGE FROM THE BLUNT INSTRUMENTS OF TERRORISTS. AND ALONG THE WAY WE ARE — A LOT OF INDUSTRIES ARE FEELING A LOT OF PAIN, AND THAT’S TIME THAT WE CAN NEVER GET BACK. I THINK ALONG THOSE LINES, ALSO, THERE COULD HAVE BEEN — THERE COULD — THIS SHOULD PROBABLY HAVE BEEN TAKEN EARLIER BY EARLIER ADMINISTRATIONS WHEN THE CONCERN STARTED TO ARIAS. A –WHETHER IT STARTED TO ARISE. THE OTHER THING WOULD HAVE BEEN TO DELAY SOME OF THESE THINGS SO THAT MAYBE WE’RE NOT DOING ALL OF OUR TARIFFS ALL AT ONCE, IN A SHORT PERIOD OF TIME. BUT, AGAIN, POLITICALLY FROM AN ADMINISTRATIVE STANDPOINT, FOUR YEARS, THERE IS NO GUARANTEE OF A RE-ELECTION, SO I THINK THAT PERHAPS THERE WAS THE IDEA OF WE NEED TO STRIKE WHILE WE ARE, WHILE THE IRON IS HOT AND WE ARE GOING TO MOVE RIGHT NOW. AS FAR AS AN ALTERNATIVE, THERE WAS A LAW PASSED LAST YEAR CALLED THE FOREIGN INVESTMENT RISK REVIEW MODERNIZATION ACT, AND THERE WAS A JOINT LAW, A SISTER LAW PASSED CALLED THE EXPORT CONTROL REFORM ACT, AND BOTH THOSE WERE PASSED WITH CHINA, PRIMARILY, IN MIND. AND THE IDEA WAS TO PREVENT CHINA’S ACQUISITION OF CRITICAL TECHNOLOGIES OR FOREIGN INVESTMENT INTO CRITICAL INFRASTRUCTURE IN THE UNITED STATES, AND SO WHILE IT DOES NOT NECESSARILY ADDRESS THE STEEL, THE STEEL CONCERNS, AND LOSING THE STEEL INDUSTRY, WHAT IT WAS INTEND TO DO IS DO WHAT THE REST OF THE CHINESE TARIFFS ARE INTENDING TO DO, WHICH IS PENALIZE CHINA FOR TRYING TO TAKE AGGRESSIVE OR PREDATORY APPROACHES TO OUR TECHNOLOGY. THROUGH LEGISLATION, AND THE REGULATIONS THAT WILL HAPPEN WITH FOREIGN INVESTMENT AND HOW WE CONTROL THE TECHNOLOGY WE CAN ACHIEVE THE SAME ENDS THAT THE TARIFFS ARE TRYING TO ACHIEVE. OKAY. AND ROBERT, I WOULD LIKE TO KNOW IF YOU HAVE A QUESTION FOR THE PANEL AND WHAT IS YOUR QUESTION. YEAH, I HAD A QUESTION. I WAS DEALING WITH THE LOUISIANA LEGISLATORS, SO IN LOUISIANA, HOW CAN WE KIND OF MITIGATE THE IMPACTS THAT SMALL BUSINESSES ARE FEELING WITH OUR OWN LEGISLATION? I KNOW OBVIOUSLY, TARIFFS, THAT’S A NATIONAL, AND INTERNATIONAL ISSUE AT THE FEDERAL LEVEL BUT IS THERE A SUBSET? OUR OWN LEGISLATURE IN BATON ROUGE CAN TAKE TO PROTECT THE FARMERS AND PROTECT THE SMALL BUSINESS OWNERS HERE IN LOUISIANA? I THINK WE NEED TO BE CAUTIOUS AROUND THAT. IF YOU BELIEVE TARIFFS WORK, THEN YOU WOULD BUILD A WALL AROUND THE UNITED STATES AND ONLY CONSUME WHAT WE PRODUCE. IF YOU THINK THAT’S A SMART IDEA WE WILL BUILD A WALL AROUND LOUISIANA, AND ONLY CONSUME WHAT WE PRODUCE, AND WE HAVE TO BE CAREFUL THAT WE HAVE THIS DOWN TO WHERE WE HAVE THAT IMMEDIATE IMPACT IN OUR LOCAL COMMUNITIES, AND PASSING LEGISLATION, I THINK, HAS TO BE VERY, VERY — WE HAVE TO BE VERY CAUTIOUS IN THAT REGARD BECAUSE WE WILL FIND OURSELVES ISOLATED FROM THE BALANCE OF THE COUNTRY AND MAYBE EVEN GROW OR EXPAND THE IMPACT OF THOSE TARIFFS. OKAY. I WOULD JUMP IN AND SAY THAT I THINK THAT THERE IS SOME THINGS THAT WE CAN DO, WHETHER IN THE STATE OR DOMESTICALLY THAT COULD MITIGATION THIS, FROM THE PRESSURE THAT COMES FROM TARIFFS AND INTERNATIONAL TRADE. FARMERS, BUSINESS OWNERS, AND THERE IS ONLY SO MANY THINGS IN THEIR BUDGET THAT THEY CAN CONTROL. ESPECIALLY FOR FARMERS WHO ARE PRICE TAKERS, THOSE FEW THINGS, THOSE VARIABLES THAT THEY CAN CONTROL BECOME EXPONENTIALLY IMPORTANT, SO WHEN YOU TALK ABOUT THINGS IN THE STATE, LIKE INSURANCE COSTS, TORT REFORM WOULD BE A GREAT PLACE TO START. THAT WOULD, WHILE IT’S NOT DIRECTLY RELATED TO THE TARIFF SITUATION, IT HELPS SMALL BUSINESS OWNERS, LOGGERS, FARMERS, AND JUST THE CITIZENS THE STATE ALLEVIATE THE PAIN THAT THEY ARE FEELING FROM THE REDUCED PRICE THAT THEY ARE RECEIVING BY REDUCING THE COST. THERE IS VERY FEW THINGS IN A HARMERS BUDGET THAT HE OR SHE CAN CONTROL COST-WISE, AND THE FEW THINGS THAT THEY CANNOT CONTROL BECOME JUST SO IMPORTANT AND LAWS LIKE THAT IN THE STATE COULD GO UP A LONG WAY IN HELPING US WEATHER THE STORM. I WOULD AGREE, TORT REFORM IS — COULD CLEAN UP A LOT OF ISSUES IN COMMERCE AND IN THE MANUFACTURING AND BUSINESSES, AND THAT CERTAINLY IS, IS TRUE BUT WE JUST MUST BE CAREFUL THAT WE DON’T BECOME, YOU KNOW, ISOLATIONISTS AND DON’T TRY TO SEPARATE OURSELVES FROM A BROADER ECONOMY THAT CAN ABSORB THE IMPACT OF THESE TARIFFS. AND THAT’S ONE OF THE THINGS ABOUT TARIFFS IS THAT THE COST IS BILLIONS TO OUR ECONOMY. BUT, IT’S BEEN OVER 330 MILLION PEOPLE IN THE COUNTRY, SO IF YOU REDUCE THAT TO MORE LOCALIZE THE IMPACT THROUGH LEGISLATION AND POLITICS, AND POLITICAL ACTION, YOU TEND TO RAMP UP THAT IMPACT, SO WE HAVE TO BE CAREFUL IN THAT, IN THAT ARENA. OKAY. DANIELLE? COULD YOU PLEASE GIVE US YOUR QUESTION? YES, IT HAS BEEN TOUCHED UPON THAT THIS IS NOT JUST A U.S. VERSUS CHINA TARIFF — OR WAR ON TRADE. THIS IS AN INTERNATIONAL, GLOBAL WAR. ARE THERE ANY COUNTRIES THAT WE COULD POSSIBLY TRY TO GET ON OUR SIDE AS ALLIES? TO MY KNOWLEDGE I DON’T THINK AS OF NOW THE PRESIDENT HAS ASKED ANY OTHER COUNTRY TO JOIN IN OR TO TRY TO BECOME ALLIES WITH US AND THE ISSUE. SO PARTNERSHIPS? CORRECT. YEAH, SO I CAN SPEAK A BIT TO THAT. FIRST OF ALL IT’S IMPORTANT AS WE ARE LOOKING TO KEEP IN MIND WHO THE UNITED STATES HAS FREE TRADE AGREEMENTS WITH. THERE IS A NUMBER OF COUNTRIES THAT THE UNITED STATES HAS FREE TRADE AGREEMENTS WITH, AND SO IT’S TARIFFS BACK AND FORTH THROUGHOUT SOUTH KOREA, THROUGHOUT THE CARIBBEAN, LATIN AMERICA — THERE ARE A NUMBER OF COUNTRIES THERE. AND ADDITIONALLY, THE E.U. ALSO IS LOOKING AT HOW CHINA IS DEALING WITH TECHNOLOGY AND HOW IT IS DEALING WITH FOREIGN INVESTMENT, SO THERE IS A LOT OF PRESSURE FROM OTHER COUNTRIES FOR CHINA TO DO — FOR CHINA TO REREGULATE HOW THE INFRASTRUCTURE ECONOMY DECISIONS ARE, AND SO THE UNITED STATES IS WORKING IN THAT CAPACITY. UNFORTUNATELY, BECAUSE AS WAS MENTIONED EARLIER, THE UNITED STATES ALSO IS IN TRADE TENSIONS WITH THE E.U., INDIA, AND A NUMBER OF OTHER COUNTRIES. IT IS CHALLENGING. WHILE THEY MAY AGREE ON ONE PORTION OF IT, THERE IS TENSIONS THAT THEY ARE DISPUTING WITHIN THAT. OKAY. JIM, DO YOU HAVE A QUESTION THAT YOU WOULD LIKE TO ASK? I THINK THAT CONTEXT IS REALLY IMPORTANT AS WE DEAL WITH THIS. I THOROUGHLY AGREE WITH SCOTT BROADLY IN TERMS OF WE CANNOT BECOME ISOLATIONISTS IN THIS. WE ARE CONNECTED TO EVERYTHING, WHETHER WE HAVE A FREE TRADE AGREEMENT IN PLACE OR NOT, AND BUT, WHAT WE EXPERIENCE ON MAIN STREET IS OFTEN THE AMAZONNING OF THE ECONOMY, THE LOSS OF THE RETAIL SECTOR LOCALLY. AND ALL OF THESE THINGS ARE CONNECTED. HOW DO WE PLAY AT A STATE LEVEL TO GET STRONGER? NOT, NOT FROM AN ISOLATIONIST STANDPOINT, BUT TO ACT IN WAYS THAT MAKE US MORE A PART OF THE SOLUTIONS AND MORE CONNECTED TO THE MARKETS. VERY BRIEFLY, ANSWER, DIVERSIFICATION? THAT’S EXACTLY WHAT I WAS THINKING, AND I THINK THAT THAT’S A NICE PARALLEL TO THINKING ABOUT, YOU KNOW, DEALING IN A BROADER ECONOMY, SO NOT JUST THINKING ABOUT LOUISIANA, BUT THINKING ABOUT THE NATIONAL ECONOMY AND HOW WE CAN BE MORE INTEGRATED INTO THE GLOBAL ECONOMY BUT I THINK, IF WE ARE TALKING ABOUT LOUISIANA, WHAT CAN WE DO WITHIN OUR STATE, TO BE BETTER POSITIONED, I THINK, AND CONTINUING TO DIVERSIFY THE ECONOMY AND BEING READY TO ADAPT AND TO PURSUE NEW SEGMENTS OF THE ECONOMY, AND I THINK THAT THAT’S A CRITICAL PART OF BEING MORE RESILIENT IN THE FUTURE. OKAY. WE CAN ALSO REEMERGE LIKE THE FURNITURE INDUSTRY, THERE IS ONLY A HANDFUL LEFT, AND IT USED TO BE THAT WE PRODUCED 90% OF WHAT WE CONSUMED HERE SO WE HAVE THE PEOPLE, RAW MATERIAL, OPPORTUNITIES TO REINVIGORATE THAT INDUSTRY, AND I THINK THAT THAT’S A GREAT WAY TO DIVERSIFY, RE-ENGINEERING AND REIMAGINING THAT BEING PART OF OUR COMMUNITIES AND PART OF OUR ECONOMY. WELL, THAT’S ALL TIME THAT WE HAVE FOR THE SHOW. WE WOULD LIKE TO THANK OUR PANELISTS, DR. BARNES, MR. BROWN, MR. POOLE AND NEWSOME FOR THEIR INPUT IN TONIGHT’S TOPIC. YOU CAN COMMENT ON THIS PARTICULAR EPISODE ONLINE AT WWW.LPB.ORG/PUBLICSQUARE UNDER THE, JOIN THE CONVERSATION, TAB. WHILE THERE YOU CAN ALSO CHECK OUT THE EXTENDED INTERVIEW CLIPS. WE WOULD LIKE TO THANK VERY IMPORTANT PEOPLE, THE STAFF OF THE COUGHLIN SAUNDERS’ CENTER FOR THEIR ASSISTANCE AND HOSPICETALITY AND TO DEBORAH RANDOLPH AND THE CENTRAL LOUISIANA CHAMBER OF COMMERCE, AND ALL THEIR HELP. GOOD NIGHT, EVERYONE. THANK YOU, GOOD SHOW, EVERYONE. THANKS. GIVE YOURSELF A ROUND OF APPLAUSE. [APPLAUSE] Captioning Performed By LNS Captioning www.LNScaptioning.com FOR COPY OF THIS PROGRAM CALL 1-800-973-7246. OR GO ONLINE TO WWW.LPB.ORG.

Stephen Childs

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