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November 21, 2020 - International Trade News

Agri-food Exporters Say Canada Needs a Permanent Free Trade Agreement with the UK

Dan Darling, President of the Canadian Agri-Food Trade Alliance (CAFTA) today issued the statement below following the announcement of a Canada-United Kingdom Trade Continuity Agreement.

“For some Canadian agri-food exporters, this interim agreement preserves existing market access to the United Kingdom (UK) during a period of transition. Our members welcome the temporary certainty and stability this provides for these sectors, and we look forward to assessing the agreement further when the full text is made available. We call on Parliamentarians to work together and pass this agreement before the end of the year.

“However, for other agri-food exporters, a transitional arrangement simply reinforces a situation that remains unacceptable under CETA due to the persistence of trade obstacles that continue to hinder Canadian exports.

“That is why we are urging both parties to return to the negotiating table as soon as possible in order to reach a comprehensive and more ambitious pact that removes tariffs and non-tariff barriers, provides liberal rules of origin and creates a level playing that will enable increased trade and deliver commercially viable two-way growth for agri-food.
“A transitional agreement is a welcome stop gap measure but it is not enough. The best way to show the world that free and open trade can protect the economy now and support recovery is by negotiating and concluding an actual meaningful free trade agreement that enables viable growth for agri-food and generates significant benefits for both sides.”

CAFTA is the voice of Canadian agriculture and agri-food exporters, representing the 90% of farmers who depend on trade and the ranchers, producers, processors and agri-food exporters who want to grow the economy through better access to international markets. This includes the beef, pork, meat, grains, cereals, pulses, soybeans, canola as well as the sugar, malt, and processed food industries. The sectors CAFTA represents 90 per cent of Canada’s agri-food exports and support over a million jobs in urban and rural communities across Canada.

For further information, please contact:
Claire Citeau
Executive Director
T: 613-560-0500 / C: 613-266-9104