Category: Trade

Mexico’s election adds more political risk to NAFTA

As if NAFTA negotiations weren’t complicated enough with trying to figure out what the U.S. administration wants, Mexico’s looming election is adding another layer of political uncertainty. The political threat to a successful renegotiation of the North American Free Trade Agreement is particularly concerning for trade-dependent industries like agriculture, as highlighted by two of the… Read more »

The crux of populist politics for agriculture

Farmers and ranchers across Canada and the United States identify with a hard day’s work, family, and a life away from the hustle and bustle of the city. You would have to drive many dirt roads before you found a farmer in either country identifying with “the elites.” In the Right Honourable Stephen Harper’s recent… Read more »

Market access “probably the biggest issue” facing the grains industry

While much of the focus over the past several months has been on the pulse industry, with India’s tariffs on pulse crops, Canada’s cereal crop value chain has also had its hands full working on market access challenges. Italy, with its new country-of-origin labeling legislation and campaigns spreading doubt about the quality and safety of… Read more »

MacAulay non-committal on dairy program to offset CPTPP concessions

The federal Liberals remain non-committal on whether they will offer compensation to the supply-managed dairy and poultry sectors for market access that will be conceded if the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP) is ratified. The CPTPP terms agreed to last month would open up an additional 3.25 percent of Canada’s domestic dairy… Read more »

U.S. dairy subsidies equal 73 percent of producer returns, says new report

Comparing government support for Canadian versus American dairy farmers is not a simple black and white process. While Canada’s dairy sector operates under a regulated supply management system, the U.S. government’s support for its dairy farmers is less direct. Support, in its various forms, equaled 73 percent of U.S. dairy farmers’ market returns in 2015,… Read more »

An old profession, but farmers are professionals — A Finnish farmer’s take on maintaining access to crop protection tools

Regulations, by their nature, are country or region specific, but they can have spillover effects into other markets. This is the case with many crop protection products between trading partners — a ban or restriction in one region can have trickle-down impacts on use and even access in another. Many North American farmers have been… Read more »

What’s next for Alberta’s farm and ranch sector: Minister Carlier

Since May 2015, when Alberta elected Rachel Notley and the NDP as its government, the province’s farmers and ranchers have had some adjusting to do. Legislative changes, such as Bill 6, have not been without controversy, but we perhaps haven’t seen the sweeping changes many feared. Still, farmers are dealing with depressed commodity markets and… Read more »

Currency Wars — where is the U.S. dollar really headed?

Last week there were reasons for confusion on what direction the American dollar might take based on White House policy. Most of the confusion last week was driven by comments made by different members of the White House team. “It’s interesting, it’s almost like currency wars at the moment,” says Matthew Pot of Grain Perspectives… Read more »

Conservatives to push Liberals on TPP compensation

With the Canadian trade team agreeing to the Trans Pacific Partnership, there will be opportunities for the opposing parties to bring up issues with the deal. You can expect both the NDP and the Conservatives to use the TPP agreement as political leverage. The Conservatives, who were previously very critical of the Liberals for not… Read more »

The U.S. had increased dairy market access to Canada through TPP and they gave it up

Throughout the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) negotiating rounds, groups like the United States Dairy Export Council have been lobbying for increased market access into Canada. The Americans are looking for the same kind of access that they enjoy with Mexico. This week we saw the signing of the Comprehensive and Progressive Trans-Pacific Partnership… Read more »

New TPP deal, same concessions for Canada’s supply managed sectors

The Canadian government has conceded the same access to the country’s dairy, poultry and egg markets in the new Trans-Pacific Partnership as was agreed to the initial version of the deal in 2015 when the U.S. was still part of the TPP. Canada and the other 10 countries concluded negotiations on Tuesday for the updated… Read more »

Canada agrees to sign updated TPP

Negotiators for the 11 remaining countries in the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), including Canada, have reached a new deal following a two-day meeting in Japan. “Today, I am pleased to announce that Canada and the 10 other remaining members of the Trans-Pacific Partnership concluded discussions in Tokyo, Japan, on a new Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for… Read more »

All eyes on Canada in round 6 of NAFTA negotiations

Round 6 of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) talks are about to begin in Montreal, and interested parties will be gauging the mood of the discussions closely. Over the weekend, there were several articles on the grumpiness of U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer on the topic of the Canadian negotiation strategy at the… Read more »

Ag groups push for TPP participation as Australia, Japan set March timeline

With Australia and Japan saying they want to finalize the deal by March, Canadian agriculture groups are reiterating the importance of Canada participating in the Trans-Pacific Partnership (now officially known as the Comprehensive and Progressive Trans-Pacific Partnership or CPTPP.) There have been serious questions about Canada’s participation in the Pacific trade deal after Prime Minister… Read more »

The NAFTA timeline has become indeterminate

It was a timeline that was described as aggressive and fast, but not totally impossible. Early in the NAFTA renegotiations, everyone recognized that attempting to complete the negotiations within a seven month timeline was going to be difficult, but optimists thought our economic bond would win in the end. The July 1st Mexican election and… Read more »