REGINA - Saskatchewan's premier says the federal government's boost to cash advances for canola farmers gives them breathing space as a trade dispute with China continues.
Scott Moe says Ottawa largely granted the province's request of raising the ceiling of a loan payment program to $1 million from $400,000.
The province had asked for the maximum amount of $1 million to be interest free, but Moe says he appreciates the federal government forgiving the interest on half of that.
"We're appreciative of the effort and, in fairness, the federal government has shown that they do support western Canadian agriculture," Moe said Wednesday.
"What would be sufficient for farmers is market access into China and all other countries in the world."
Moe said the province will be taking part in future trade missions to Japan and South Korea to try to expand its customer base for canola.
The Agricultural Producers Association of Saskatchewan said it welcomes the increased cash advances as another tool farmers can use to weather the trade dispute.
"It's not the silver bullet that's going to fix everybody's problem," said president Todd Lewis, who pointed out the relief comes in the form of a loan.
China has blocked Canadian canola shipments in what is widely considered retaliation for the detention of Huawei executive Meng Wanzhou.
This week, Moe called for Canada to apply reciprocal treatment in the form of increased scrutiny on Chinese products coming into Canada.Source : FCC