Agriculture and Agri-Food Minister speaks with European Union’s Commissioner for Agriculture and Rural Development
Agriculture and Agri-Food Minister MarieClaude Bibeau spoke on June 23 with the European Union’s Commissioner for Agriculture and Rural Development, Commissioner Janusz Wojciechowski.
Minister Bibeau and Commissioner Wojciechowski emphasized the strength of the Canada-EU relationship, especially in agricultural trade. They reiterated the need to work collaboratively to ensure a well-functioning integrated supply chain in food and food products between Europe and Canada, which is essential to safeguarding the health and wellbeing of citizens during COVID-19.
Both ministers also emphasized the need for free and open trade, especially in the current COVID-19 crisis, and benefits of the EU-Canada Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA), provisionally applied since September 2017.
In addition, Minister Bibeau emphasized that Canada and the EU need to co-operate to ensure that our farmers and processors benefit from the trade agreement, underscoring the importance of improving EU market access for Canadian agricultural products through the removal of technical barriers to trade.
“Maintaining strong trade with our European friends and allies will be essential for our economic restart. During my discussion with Commissioner Wojciechowski, I built upon the strength of that longstanding relationship and promoted the high-quality of Canadian agri-food products,” said Bibeau.
• Since CETA provisionally went into effect in September 2017, exports of agriculture and agri-food to the EU have increased nearly 12% between 2016 (the last full year prior to CETA) and 2019. Some of the commodities to benefit the most from CETA tariff reductions are: cranberries (exports up 130%); fruits and nuts (up 84%); dog and cat food (up 22%); and maple sugar and syrup (up 15%).
• Other commodities that saw exports increase in that time period are: canola seed (up 97%); kidney and white pea beans (up 30%); soya beans (up 13%); and corn (up 11%).