Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Trade and Development Mission to Romania – Day 3

Commissioner Staples traveled to Romania March 29 - April 1 for a trade and development mission to Romania as an invitee of the Emanuel Agriculture Development Corporation. The trip serves many purposes: to establish a trade relationship that will foster bi-national commerce between Texas and Romania and to assist Romanian farmers and ranchers by sharing ideas that can improve their agriculture industry. Below is a day-by-day account of Commissioner Staples’ visit to Romania.

View a slideshow of his trip here:

The cars may be little and the streets narrow, but the Parliament Building is big – I mean really BIG. As in, second in size only to the Pentagon.

As the Romanian Senate Committee on Agriculture called it, the People's Palace, 12 stories above ground and at least 8 below (not all finished), is a very opulent structure and a marvelous display of many styles of architecture. It’s amazing that it was built only in 1984.

It is also amazing how productive Texas & American farms and ranches are compared to the agriculture industry in this young and new free market economy in a society that makes our country look like the babe it is.

I tried to convey to them our farmers and ranchers set the policy in Texas and the USA. Sometimes it gets out of balance, but an election or two usually sets things straight.

I also tried to explain how farmers and ranchers interact with agribusiness, extension service, career/tech training, higher education and all levels of government to be so productive and, we hope, profitable more years than not.

The group of Texans I traveled with was more than eager to share their expertise and knowledge with those wanting to make positive change. Also, trade and export opportunities for Texas producers and agribusinesses were brought up frequently with the Romanian Minister of Agriculture, senators, and university and academia representatives we met with today. We also met with Department of Commerce, USDA FAS and economic officials at the U.S. Embassy in Bucharest. They gave the delegation some terrific ideas and were a very resourceful bunch.

I am anxious to see where all these positive visits lead for Texas agriculture. I am also very anxious to get back to Texas, which I am doing in the morning.

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