SASKATOON, March 29, 2019 /CNW/ - Canada is a world-leading producer of canola. Canola farmers and producers are a key driver of Canada's economic growth, exporting over 18 million tonnes of canola and canola products in 2018, valued at over $11 billion. The Government of Canada knows that strong markets for our high-quality Canadian canola means more money in the pockets of our famers and supports good, middle class jobs for Canadian farm families, and that is why we are working hard to support farmers and producers and ensure that high-quality Canadian canola reaches markets around the world.
Today, Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food Marie-Claude Bibeau and Minister of International Trade Diversification Jim Carr were in Saskatoon where they met with agricultural industry leaders and their provincial counterparts to discuss priorities for Saskatchewan's agriculture sector, including canola exports.
Minister Bibeau and Minister Carr took the opportunity to meet with Saskatchewan's Agriculture Minister, David Marit, and Minister of Trade and Export Development Jeremy Harrison, to discuss key trade issues, outline opportunities for collaborative engagement with China and hear the views of their provincial colleagues.
The Ministers hosted a roundtable with representatives from the canola sector, where they reaffirmed the Government of Canada's commitment to work through all available channels to resolve the disruption of Canada's canola seed exports to China as quickly as possible.
The Ministers held a roundtable with key agricultural stakeholders from the grains, pulses, and special crops sector to discuss opportunities and challenges, and how to continue building an even stronger and more innovative agricultural sector for Saskatchewan.
The Ministers also met with other agricultural industry groups to discuss various topics of importance to the sector, including export opportunities, research and trade diversification in global markets.
The Government of Canada understands the concern from canola farmers, producers and industry. Ensuring canola producers regain full market access is a priority for the Government of Canada. Canadian and Chinese officials are actively engaging and we are looking at sending a high-level delegation to China to find a technical solution. The Ministers reiterated the importance of strong collaboration between the federal government, industry and provinces on this ongoing issue.
"We are working for Canadian farmers by investing in research and innovation and expanding market access to ensure the continued success of our farm families in Saskatchewan and across the country. The Government of Canada is deeply concerned about China's notices of non-compliance and strengthened inspection measures on Canadian canola seed. Canadian farmers can be assured that the Government of Canada stands firmly behind them and is working hard to secure unrestricted market access for Canada's high-quality canola and to open new markets for our agricultural products."
- Marie Claude-Bibeau, Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food
"The Government of Canada is committed to diversifying trade and opening new markets for Canadian exporters. We continue to work closely with producers, exporters and our provincial counterparts to resolve the current canola issue as quickly as possible. Our high-quality agriculture and agri-food products are in demand around the globe and we want to ensure that consumers have access to a wide-variety of Canadian products."
- Jim Carr, Minister of International Trade Diversification
- The Government of Canada is helping to drive innovation in Canada's canola industry with a federal investment of $12 million in the new canola research cluster. With investment from canola producers, the total investment will top $20 million.
- Canada's canola industry contributes almost $27 billion dollars annually to the country's economy and in 2018, Canada exported over $11 billion in canola products to over 50 markets.
- The newly implemented Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP) and the Canada-European Union Comprehensive and economic Trade Agreement (CETA) are creating significant export opportunities for Canadians, with the CPTPP alone expected to result in $780 million in new canola exports per year.
SOURCE Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada
For further information: Katie Hawkins, Director of Communications, Office of the Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food, 613-773-1059, [email protected]; Media Relations, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, Ottawa, Ontario, 613-773-7972, 1-866-345-7972, [email protected]