The United States soybean industry has signed two letters of intent with Chinese importers covering the five billion dollar purchases by the latter of an additional 12 million tonnes of soybeans in the 2017/18 marketing year.
The non-binding agreements, disclosed by the U.S. Soybean Export Council (USSEC) in a statement, are among a series of trade accords announced during the visit of U.S. President Donald Trump to Beijing.
China is the world’s top soybean buyer and the U.S. its second supplier after Brazil.
In the first agreement, signed on Nov. 8, the China Chamber of Commerce of Foodstuffs and Native Produce said it intended to purchase eight million tonnes of U.S. soybeans worth 3.4 billion dollars.
A second agreement will be signed on Thursday between grains trader ADM, and China’s COFCO for intent to purchase four million tonnes of soybeans worth 1.6 billion dollars, said the USSEC.
The two deals follow a pledge by Chinese importers to buy 12.53 million tonnes of U.S. soybeans during a visit to the U.S. in July.
They also come as U.S. farmers seek to export more beans after growing a record crop.
China’s agriculture ministry revised up its forecast for soybean imports in the 2017/18 crop year on Thursday to 95.97 million tonnes from a previous forecast of 94.5 million tonnes.
Meanwhile, China’s top state oil major, Sinopec, one of the country’s top banks and its sovereign wealth fund have agreed to help develop Alaska’s liquefied natural gas sector.
This is part of fall-outs of U.S. President Donald Trump’s visit, the U.S. government said on Thursday.
Alaska Gasline Development Corp (AGDC), the State of Alaska, Sinopec, China Investment Corp and the Bank of China have signed an agreement to advance (LNG) in Alaska.
The agreement will involve investment of up to 43 billion dollars, create up to 12,000 U.S. jobs during construction, reduce the trade deficit between the United States and Asia by 10 billion dollars a year, and give China clean energy.