Statement by the Canadian Agri-Food Trade Alliance on the status of Trans-Pacific Partnership negotiations in Maui
Maui, Hawaii – July 31, 2015 – The Canadian Agri-Food Trade Alliance (CAFTA) is disappointed that Trade Ministers negotiating the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) were not able to complete an agreement. However, CAFTA members are encouraged that Trade Ministers reported significant progress and reiterated their commitment to reaching an ambitious 21st century trade deal that will integrate economies across the TPP region in the near future.
“We are hopeful that all political leaders recognize the importance of concluding the TPP to secure our prosperity and future growth,” said CAFTA president Brian Innes. “It is reassuring to hear Minister Fast affirm Canada’s commitment to be an active participant at the negotiating table in the coming weeks. At this critical stage, it is essential that all political leaders stand up for Canadian agriculture and agri-food exporters to ensure that Canada is a founding member of the TPP.”
The TPP encompasses a market of 800 million people and nearly 40 per cent of the world’s economy. The TPP will provide improved access to rapidly growing Asian-Pacific markets such as Vietnam, Malaysia, Singapore, and preserve the benefit of our integrated North American market.
“The costs of not participating in this deal would be huge,” added Innes. “This is a region that absorbs 65 per cent of our annual agri-food exports. A comprehensive, plurilateral free trade agreement will ensure that we continue to be globally competitive.”
“We thank Canada’s Trade Minister Fast, and the team of Canadian negotiators who continue their hard work to deliver an agreement that will help agri-food exports create jobs and support communities across the country,” added Innes.
CAFTA is a coalition of national and regional organizations that support a more open and fair international trading environment for agriculture and agri-food. CAFTA’s members include producer organizations, processors, marketers and exporters from the major trade dependent sectors in Canada. Together, these sectors produce almost 80 per cent of Canada’s agriculture and agri-food exports, conduct about $40 billion in business annually and directly employ close to 500,000 Canadians.
For further information, contact:
Executive Director, CAFTA