China had suspended the payments earlier this year as a bilateral trade war heated up.
ASA President Davie Stephens in a statement said it’s vital that ongoing U.S.-China negotiations result in China removing the current 25 percent tariff on U.S. soybeans.
“Without removal of this tariff, it is improbable that sales of U.S. soybeans to China can be sustained,” he said.
During a Dec. 1 meeting of U.S. and Chinese delegations at the G20 summit led by President Donald Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping, respectively, China agreed to increase purchases of agricultural products from the U.S.
But Stephens added that the U.S. soybean sector is suffering from prices about $2 lower per bushel since May, and said it’s crucial for the Agriculture Department to provide more financial assistance to U.S. soybean farmers.
“When USDA calculated the harm incurred by the tariffs on soybean prices, it assumed that China would still purchase at least 50 percent of the 32 million tons of U.S. soybeans it bought in 2017,” Stephens said. “With only a fraction of this amount accounted for in this week’s announced sale, it is critically important that we see additional purchases and actual deliveries and for USDA to make a payment on the second half of 2018 soybean production.”