Statement by Premier Ford on USMCA Trade Agreement

Premier Promises To Protect Province's Economy Under USMCA

But Trump had threatened to leave Canada out of the trade deal altogether if an agreement could not be reached by midnight Sunday, confronting Trudeau with the prospect of broader disruptions to the Canadian economy.

"Dairy farmers are not happy but when Trump made that his key "ask" over and over and over again, I don't think it could be ignored", said Jon Johnson of the CD Howe Institute, who helped negotiate the original 1994 NAFTA.

He said this deal - which will revamp the old NAFTA - protects supply management, staves off auto tariffs, and maintains fair hearings in any disputes with our large neighbour to the south.

Dairy Farmers of Canada issued a terse statement nearly immediately after the 11th-hour agreement was announced late Sunday, following 14 months of hard negotiations between the parties. But he believes those profits would mostly be seen by farmers living near the border between United States and Canada. The USMCA includes new provisions to provide science-based trading standards, timely review of products produced through biotechnology and gene editing and new provisions on geographic indications. Johansson urged US negotiators to reach agreements on those issues as soon as possible.

The deal would give US farmers more access to the protected Canadian dairy market.

The United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement, or USMCA, is expected to help US dairy, but many in the industry are cautious about calling it a victory just yet.

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Monroe says the USA pork sector has been in expansion mode but the uncertainty we've seen around exports over the past year has inhibited investments. Many in the dairy industry said Monday that expanded access from the U.S.to Canada's supply will be detrimental to local markets. That was a “major point of contention” in trade talks, according to Laurie Fischer, CEO for the ADC.

"It will be good for Canadian workers, good for Canadian business, and good for Canadian families", said Trudeau.

"If we give away part of the dairy market at every new trade agreement, will it even be a viable market?"

Graeff explains that increased access to the Canadian market comes through tariff rate quotas, phased in over a 19-year period. Canadian, U.S. and Mexican politicians have been negotiating for months over what to keep, what to lose and what to compromise within the agreement, which oversees all trade relations between the three countries. "And that gives us an opportunity to continue to do business with the companies that are looking for USA dairy products". "The fact that we are again talking about growing access for USA dairy in Canada is something that makes USA dairymen happy".

The United Steelworker's Canadian branch president Ken Neuman, however, called the deal a "sellout" for failing to eliminate 25 per cent steel and 10 per cent aluminum tariffs imposed in June by the Trump administration. He says the fight wasn't really about trade between the two countries. But Robertson says lawmakers aren't rushing to do so; congressional leaders have said they're not planning to consider ratifying it until next year.

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