For many years, Canada and other nations have invested time and energy into the multilateral negotiations of the World Trade Organization. Despite optimistic proclamations by free trade advocates, the WTO has gone nowhere for years. While the WTO slips into obscurity, bilateral trade agreements are providing tangible benefits for Canadian agriculture. The most recent example is the launch of free trade negotiations with Morocco, a major market for our durum at a quarter of a billion dollars a year, and an important market for our lentils and peas at about $15 million a year. Back in 2006, the U.S. and Morocco signed a trade agreement that gradually eliminates duties on American durum and pulses entering Morocco. Without a Canadian agreement, Pulse Canada says our lentils will face a 50 per cent tariff disadvantage. Canadian peas currently face a 25 per cent tariff disadvantage. On durum, because of the 2006 agreement, Morocco has the ability to impose much higher tariffs on Canadian product than on competing durum from the U.S. There has been nothing but applause for Stephen Harper and Gerry Ritz over launching the bilateral with the North African nation. In contrast, the WTO negotiations have always been contentious. Little wonder that Canada has a growing number of bilateral deals.
I’m Kevin Hursh.
DynAgra, an independent Western Canada-based Company, is dedicated to providing growers with the tools to manage the risk and maximize the profitability of their farm business through the continued innovation of agricultural products and services. We are committed to developing and providing growers with the latest in precision agronomics, variable rate technology, soil fertility, crop protection, fertilizers, custom application and financial solutions.