Longer time­line to rat­i­fi­ca­tion of CUSMA comes as no sur­prise

Prairie Post (East Edition) - - NEWS - Courtesy Cana­dian Cat­tle­men’s As­so­ci­a­tion

It is no sur­prise that the time­line to rat­i­fi­ca­tion of the Canada-United States-Mex­ico Agree­ment (CUSMA) just got longer as the U.S. House of Rep­re­sen­ta­tives re­cessed last week with­out mov­ing for­ward on their do­mes­tic rat­i­fi­ca­tion process for the new North Amer­i­can Free Trade Agree­ment (NAFTA). CUSMA will al­low beef pro­duc­ers across the three coun­tries to con­tinue to thrive and main­tain a pos­i­tive im­pact on the Cana­dian econ­omy. A de­lay in im­ple­ment­ing the new agree­ment is not a sig­nif­i­cant con­cern for the beef sec­tor as long as the ex­ist­ing NAFTA re­mains in ef­fect. With Amer­i­can law­mak­ers gone on a five-week break, U.S. rat­i­fi­ca­tion of the U.S-Mex­ico-Canada Agree­ment (USMCA) be­fore the start of the Cana­dian fed­eral elec­tion is un­likely. Prime Min­is­ter Justin Trudeau has com­mit­ted to mov­ing in sync with the U.S. on rat­i­fi­ca­tion. The CCA’s view is that there is no ur­gent need for Cana­dian Par­lia­men­tary ac­tion this sum­mer as long as the ex­ist­ing NAFTA re­mains in place.

In June, Mex­ico be­came the first of the three na­tions to rat­ify the new NAFTA fol­low­ing the sign­ing of the mod­ern­ized trade pact by the three po­lit­i­cal lead­ers in Novem­ber 2018. In May, the Prime Min­is­ter Trudeau tabled Bill C-100 “An Act to Im­ple­ment the Agree­ment be­tween Canada, the United States of Amer­ica, and the United Mex­i­can States,” or the en­abling leg­is­la­tion to im­ple­ment CUSMA. Sec­ond read­ing took place on June 20 and the bill was re­ferred to the Stand­ing Com­mit­tee on In­ter­na­tional Trade. The Bill did not pass prior to Par­lia­ment ad­journ­ing for the sum­mer. CCA Vice Pres­i­dent and For­eign Trade Com­mit­tee Chair Bob Lowe ap­peared be­fore the House of Com­mit­tee prior to the Par­lia­men­tary re­cess to ex­press CCA’s view that the Gov­ern­ment of Canada rat­ify the CUSMA. Hav­ing ac­cess to mar­kets around the world, in­clud­ing the North Amer­i­can mar­ket, means that each beef car­cass is on av­er­age worth $602 more than it would be if sold only to the Cana­dian mar­ket. Hav­ing the agree­ment rat­i­fied in all three coun­tries would help pro­vide long term con­ti­nu­ity of ex­ist­ing rules-based ac­cess for beef pro­duc­ers to North Amer­i­can mar­kets.

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