LINCOLN, NEBRASKA, U.S. — Nebraska Governor Dave Heineman and Nebraska Agriculture Director Greg Ibach announced on Aug. 10 an agreement has been reached with Taiwanese representatives for an estimated $436 to $516 million in future sales of Nebraska crops to the country. A Nebraska trade delegation led by Ibach is exploring opportunities for agricultural exports during a trade mission to Taiwan and Hong Kong.

Trade mission participants representing Nebraska corn, soybean and wheat farmers signed a letter of intent with representatives of the Taiwan Feed Industry Association, Taiwan Vegetable Oil Manufacturers’ Association and Taiwan Flour Mills Association. The agreement pledges to purchase crops through negotiations between importers and private suppliers over the next two years.

"This agreement represents a significant commitment by the Taiwanese, who are significant trading partners for our state," Heineman said. "This commitment is good news for farmers and our state economy. I appreciate the commitment Taiwan has made to do business with Nebraska."

The agreement pledges the future purchase of 800,000 to 1 million tonnes of corn, valued at $176 to $220 million; 300,000 to 320,000 tonnes of soybeans, valued at $120 to $128 million; and 500,000 to 600,000 tonnes of wheat, valued at $140 to $168 million.

The agreement was signed by Alan Tiemann, chairman of the Nebraska Corn Board; Dennis Fujan, vice-chairman of the Nebraska Soybean Board; Dan Hughes, past chairman of the Nebraska Wheat Board; and witnessed by Ibach.

Ibach said, "We are pleased with the commitment the Taiwanese are making with this purchase. This agreement recognizes that Nebraska farmers are experienced in producing for a global market. We’ve had a positive experience identifying ways to strengthen our position within the market."

Hughes said, "The delegation has been well-received here in Taiwan. Importers tell us they appreciate the opportunity to meet one-on-one with representatives of the Nebraska farmers raising the crops that will be purchased."

The nine-member trade delegation next travels to Hong Kong for meetings with importers and distributors, as well as promoters of Nebraska beef. The delegation returns on Aug. 14.

Taiwan is the eighth largest market for all Nebraska products. In 2009, Hong Kong was Nebraska’s fifth largest agricultural trade partner.