Arkansa Governor Asa Hutchinson Emphasizes importance of Agriculture trade with Cuba

Dec 04, 2015
SaulCimbler

Having grown up the son of a farmer, Gov. Asa Hutchinson says he understands the importance of agriculture in the state, calling it part of “who we are” and noting that one in six Arkansas jobs are related to the industry.

Hutchinson delivered the keynote address at the 81st annual Arkansas Farm Bureau meeting in Little Rock on Thursday. He said that there are about 45,000 farms in Arkansas — 97 percent of them family-owned.  “If I want to grow our economy, we need to keep agriculture strong in this state,” Hutchinson said.

Hutchinso visited Cuba earlier this year, the first sitting governor to do so since the two nations restored diplomatic relations in December 2014.  He said that the nation’s economy is slowly developing and that he can see it transitioning into a free market. For example, until recently, restaurants in Cuba were government owned. But Hutchinson said a recent change allowed individuals to open their own restaurants under certain restrictions and limitations.

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