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Canada’s agri-food exporters welcome long-awaited Indo-Pacific Strategy

November 27, 2022

Ottawa, ON- November 27, 2022– Dan Darling, president of the Canadian Agri-Food Trade Alliance (CAFTA) today issued the following statement as the federal government released additional details about its Indo-Pacific Strategy.


“Our members are excited about opportunities in the Indo-Pacific, and at the same time are worried about losing market share to our competitors. That is why we welcome a Strategy that orchestrates greater engagement and puts agri-food at the heart of Canada’s push for deeper trade and investment ties throughout the region.


While we review details, we are encouraged by a variety of items featured in the Strategy including the opening of an Indo-Pacific agrifood office, a commitment to increase Canada’s advocacy capacity and more trade missions to help develop and nurture the relationships that will be vital to our sector’s long-term success. We are also pleased to see a Special Envoy will be deployed to the region to support these efforts and help coordinate greater cooperation between government and industry.


This Indo-Pacific represents a significant opportunity for our sectors to diversify as it is home to some of the world’s largest and fast growing markets such as Japan, Malaysia, Vietnam, Indonesia, Philippines, Singapore and India. We particularly welcome the emphasis on the continued expansion of the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP) and encourage Canada to maintain a pace of negotiations towards comprehensive trade agreements with India, Indonesia and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN).


As a country that supports free- and rules-based trade, as well as upholding the values we as Canadians hold dear, it is vital that we be at the tables that are making the rules for global trade in some of the largest and most dynamic regions and markets in the world.


An immense opportunity awaits our sector in the Indo-Pacific, which will help create jobs and prosperity for Canadians here at home. However, to truly seize these opportunities, free- and rules-based trade must win the day and industry-government cooperation must be a never-ending focus as it is for our fiercest competitors.


We commend the federal government for recognizing the need for Canada to have a clear and coherent Indo-Pacific Strategy and we stand ready to do our part to help feed the world and support Canada’s economy”.


CAFTA is the voice of Canadian agriculture and agri-food exporters, representing the 90% of farmers who depend on trade and the ranchers, producers, processors and agri-food exporters who want to grow the economy through better access to international markets. This includes the beef, pork, meat, grains, cereals, pulses, soybeans, canola as well as the sugar, malt, and processed food industries. The sectors CAFTA represents 90 per cent of Canada’s agri-food exports and support over a million jobs in urban and rural communities across Canada.


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