The U.S. soybean industry is focused on strengthening relations with importers in Asia and developing new markets. U.S. Soybean Export Council Regional Director Paul Burke says the industry recently applied for Agricultural Trade Promotion program funds to address short-term and longer-term challenges. The ATP provides a one-time allocation of up to $200 million to be used in a three-year period. “We would be spending a specific amount of funds bringing teams to the Pacific Northwest, showing them the export terminals there and introducing them to the opportunities to purchase soybeans at an attractive price,” says Burke. “We view these funds as a chance to accelerate our long-term marketing plan. The plan to develop new markets in high population countries with low soy consumption like India, Pakistan, Bangladesh and Nigeria.” Burke says the U.S. soybean industry was too dependent on the China marketplace.