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UK's entry into the CPTPP raises concerns

Canada's red meat sector is raising concerns over the potential for the UK's entry into the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership.

On Saturday, Canada's Minister of Trade Mary Ng announced they had agreed to grant the United Kingdom accession.

The Canadian Meat Council, Canadian Cattle Association, and the Canadian Pork Council are deeply disappointed with the move.

They note that we have no viable market access there and are calling on the government to ensure the Canadian/United Kingdom bilateral agreement currently being negotiated will guarantee fair access.

Chris White, President and CEO of the Canadian Meat Council says fair and open market access has allowed both the beef and pork industries to thrive, so our opposition is not something we have entered into lightly or without consideration.

 

They note that if the bilateral agreement being negotiated doesn't guarantee fair access then they want to see the federal government provide fair compensation for the damages and losses that will result for both products as a result of the move.

 Stephen Heckbert, Executive Director of the Canadian Pork Council says the inclusion of the UK without adequate safeguards and market access provisions for Canadian pork raises concerns about potential imbalances and unfair competition. 

The main area of concern is the failure to accept Canada’s meat inspection system, which limits our access to the UK market.

Nathan Phinney, President of the Canadian Cattle Association says Canadian beef producers cannot support the accession of the UK into CPTPP until our bilateral trade barriers with the UK are addressed. 

 

"We have a world-class food safety system in Canada and deliver a high-quality protein to Canadians and consumers around the world and our industry will not compromise our science-based regulatory approach."

In addition, there is a lack of reciprocal tariff measures which, under the interim measure, have allowed British beef and pork full access to the Canadian market without full reciprocity.

Heckbert says they strongly urge the government to address these issues promptly and ensure Canadian pork producers are not disadvantaged in this new trade landscape.

Source : Pembinavalley online

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