The National Post’s recent article (Time to assert our power, April 9), suggests that it’s impossible to sign a significant international trade agreement while maintaining supply management.
History proves otherwise.
The Government of Canada has successfully negotiated twelve trade agreements with 43 countries since 1994 and all of these have opened up new markets, improved trade rules, and preserved supply management. This is a successful negotiating formula that can be replicated in the TPP. It works because Canada is already the 6th largest importer of agri-food products and 1st on a per capita basis; we don’t need to take any lessons on market access from other countries, even in supply management.
Take chicken production for example. Canada is the 15th largest importer of chicken in the world. We are also the third most valuable market for US chicken exports and import more chicken than 6 of the other 11 TPP countries (including the USA) – combined.
We stand behind the market access we provide and are proud of the great value we provide Canadian consumers.
Historically, the Government of Canada has successfully concluded many bilateral and regional trade agreements that preserve supply management, and we are confident that they will be able to do it again at the TPP.
Chicken Farmers of Canada