CPC Applauds Colombia-Canada Trade Deal

by 5m Editor
25 November 2008, at 10:49am

OTTAWA - Colombia is currently Canada's 25th largest market for pork and pork products, accounting for $3 million of sales for slightly more than 2,000 tonnes over the first eight months of 2008.

"The Canadian Pork Council applauds the Government of Canada's signing on Friday of a free trade agreement with Colombia" said Jurgen Preugschas, President of the Canadian Pork Council which represents Canada's 9,000 hog producers.

However, with the creation of a 5,000 tonne tariff-rate quota and the elimination of the in-quota tariff over five years, there is important potential for growth in Canadian pork exports to Colombia. The tariff-rate quota will increase annually and the in-quota tariff will be eliminated over the first five years of the agreement's implementation.

The CPC's support for the completion of the Doha Round of multilateral trade negotiations remains strong and unequivocal. However, the slower pace of the WTO negotiations has led many of our competitors - such as the United States and Chile - to pursue bilateral and regional trade agreements. "We cannot rely on multilateral trade negotiations to offset preferential access obtained in bilateral trade agreements" added Mr. Preugschas, who operates a hog and grain enterprise in Mayerthorpe, Alberta. "Without this dual-focus on both multilateral and bilateral trade agreements, Canada's ability to supply current export markets, as well as breaking into emerging markets, will be undermined."

The Canadian Pork Council furthermore is an avid supporter of current negotiations to liberalize trade with Korea and the Central American Four (El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua) countries. The CPC also encourages trade negotiations with Japan, India and the Dominican Republic.

"The CPC compliments the efforts of Canada's trade negotiating officials and looks forward to working with the Government of Canada in the achieving the best possible results of this and other trade agreements for Canadian pork producers, and Canada's economy.