Weird News

Trump administration lists fictional country of Wakanda as a free trade partner

In the movie Black Panther, the African country of Wakanda is the most technologically advanced place in the world. It is, alas, fictional, a fact that seems to have escaped the Trump administration and the U.S. Department of Agriculture. The USDA had been keeping tabs on the “country” using an internet tariff tracker.

Thursday the agency owned up to its faux pas, noting it had listed Wakanda as a free-trade partner while it was testing its Foreign Agricultural Service and accidentally allowed the listing to go live in the land of internet infamy.

“The Foreign Agricultural Service Staff who maintain the Tariff Tracker have been using test files to ensure that the system is running properly,” according to a spokesman.

The Trump administration has been aggressively raising tariffs and wreaking havoc amongst many of the major players in the world of global trade. And of course, more than a few of the administration’s critics couldn’t resist the irony, speculating that the imaginary country might be Trump’s next target.

As RawStory points out, Francis Tseng, a fellow at the Jain Family Institute, an applied research organization, found hundreds of instances where Wakanda was mentioned as he was researching tariffs on food, NBC News reported. Yellow potatoes, for instance, were priced at 0.23 cents per pound (or 0.5 cents per kilogram).

Featured image via screen grab


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