SASKATOON, SASKATCHEWAN--(Marketwired - Feb. 5, 2014) - Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada
Agriculture Minister Gerry Ritz today addressed the 2014 Saskatchewan Agriculture Trade Summit where he highlighted how Saskatchewan producers are profiting from Canada's international trade and investment plan, including the forthcoming Canada-EU trade agreement.
Minister Ritz outlined how the Canada-EU trade agreement will create jobs, open new markets and unlock growth opportunities in the European Union for Saskatchewan's producers, processors and exporters. Once the Canada-EU trade agreement is fully implemented, grains such as wheat, barley and oats, and oilseeds such as canola, including canola oil, will gain duty free access to the EU, a market of more than 500 million consumers. The Canadian livestock sector will also benefit from new duty-free tariff quotas for exports of 150,000 tonnes collectively.
Minister Ritz also highlighted recent work with the grain industry to help implement a system to support performance management and generate new efficiencies throughout the supply chain to resolve logistics issues caused by this year's bumper crop and supply chain underperformance.
- Over the first eighteen months of marketing freedom, Canadian wheat exports are up by more than 18%, with sales to the United States up by 50%.
- Saskatchewan is home to the most important grain-producing region in Canada, and agriculture and agri-food is the province's leading economic sector. The sector accounted for 7 per cent of GDP in 2012 and employed around 43,400 people across the province.
- In 2012, Saskatchewan was the number one agriculture and agri-food exporter in Canada, with trade topping a record $11.1B. Saskatchewan's agricultural exports to the EU were worth an annual average of $670M between 2010 and 2012.
- The Canada-EU trade agreement will significantly boost trade and investment ties. Once fully implemented, over 95% of EU agricultural tariffs will be eliminated including for Canada's key agricultural export interests such as meats, grains and oilseeds, fruits and vegetables, and processed foods. The industry is estimating new grains and oilseeds opportunities in Europe arising from this historic agreement could be valued at $100M.
"By creating trade and business opportunities around the world, we are increasing farmers' profitability and contributing to the economic growth of Saskatchewan and all of Canada. As shown by the Canada-EU trade agreement, our government continues to take every opportunity to encourage open trade and promote innovation."
"Agriculture can and will continue to prosper and drive our economy to new heights. Saskatchewan's farmers grow world-class food in a global marketplace that is ripe with opportunity."
- Agriculture Minister Gerry Ritz
Canada-EU trade agreement benefits for Saskatchewan (Canada's Economic Action Plan)
Comprehensive Economic Trade and Agreement (Canada's Economic Action Plan)