On January 23rd, 2018, it was reported that Canada will likely sign a revised CPTPP agreement which includes the market access concessions originally agreed to in October 2015, when the United States, the world’s largest economy, was still a part of the deal.
Although the loss of the US represents a loss of approximately 60% of the original TPP market GDP, the original concessions to our domestic dairy market remain. How is this in the best interests of Canadians?
While some sectors may see the recent CPTPP developments as a positive, it is a somber day for the 221,000 Canadians that depend on the dairy sector for their livelihood.
“On the one hand, the Canadian government has repeatedly stated that it wants a vibrant, strong, and growing dairy sector that creates jobs and fosters investments; on the other hand, it continues to carve out pieces of our domestic dairy market, first through CETA, and now through the CPTPP,” said Pierre Lampron, President of Dairy Farmers of Canada (DFC). “The Government must understand that in continuing to make these concessions, they are putting the Canadian dairy sector in jeopardy.”
Today’s announcement also comes in the middle of the renegotiation of NAFTA, another vehicle that threatens to weaken the Canadian dairy industry. The Government must realize that there is a cumulative effect to these carve outs, which cannot be understated. It is critical that the Government understand that when it comes to the renegotiation of NAFTA, they must not give up any more on the backs of the hundreds of thousands of farmers and workers in the Canadian dairy sector.
“Our message to the Canadian government as it is negotiating NAFTA is simple: no more concessions – enough is enough, they cannot continue to carve out portions of the dairy sector ,” said Mr. Lampron.
The dairy sector is present in a majority of the ridings across this country. DFC is very interested in seeing how MPs will explain these concessions to the dairy community, and to the hundreds of thousands of workers who depend upon this community for their livelihood.
About Dairy Farmers of Canada
Founded in 1934, DFC is the national organization representing Canadian dairy farmers and striving to create favourable conditions for the Canadian dairy industry. Working within supply management, DFC promotes, as part of a healthy diet, safe, high-quality, sustainable, and nutritious Canadian dairy products made from 100% Canadian milk through various marketing, nutrition, policy, and lobbying initiatives. Driven by a strong sense of community, pride, and a commitment to improve Canadians’ health, DFC and Canadian dairy farmers actively support a number of local and national initiatives.