In 2012, Canada joined the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade negotiations. The TPP is an Asia-Pacific regional trade deal that also includes the United States, Japan, Mexico, Malaysia, Vietnam, Australia, New Zealand Singapore, Chile, Peru and Brunei.
The TPP is one of the most significant trade initiatives around the globe. Collectively, the TPP countries represent a market of 792 million people and account for close to 40% of the world’s GDP and over 65% of Canada’s $56 billion in agriculture and food trade.
The TPP is envisioned as a “comprehensive and high-standard” FTA that addresses existing and emerging trade issues in a way that meets 21st-century objectives. CAFTA and its members support this goal.
The TPP intends to boost trade and production among its member countries, and create jobs by eliminating import tariffs and other barriers to trade goods, services, and investment. The negotiations also cover other areas, such as government procurement and regulatory cooperation.
The TPP will increase Canada’s foothold in Asia, a region that is expected to contain two thirds of the world’s middle class by 2030 and one half of global GDP by 2050. Canada and its competitors recognize the significant potential Asia has to offer. As Asia’s rapid growth transforms the global economy, it is essential that Canada intensify its commercial engagement in the region in order to stay globally competitive.
TPP countries include some of Canada’s largest importers of agriculture and agri-food products such as the United States, Japan and Mexico as well as emerging countries that have strong economic growth such as Vietnam, Singapore and Malaysia.
CAFTA believes that to achieve its objectives, the TPP must eliminate tariffs and quantitative import restrictions on all goods. The agreement must also include new and sustainable approaches to deal with today’s critical trade issues, including non-tariff barriers, sanitary and phyto-sanitary measures, rules of origin, customs administration and other measures that can be critical to ensuring that market access commitments are real.
Canadian agriculture and food exporters are individually and collectively through the Canadian Agri-Food Trade Alliance, investing significant time and effort on assisting Canada in advocating for a favourable outcome from TPP negotiations.