Farmers to receive compensation as part of historic NAFTA revamp

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau tried to placate Canadian dairy farmers by promising compensation and said conversations with the industry are already underway to determine what fair compensation will look like. The pact should aid the flow of wheat, poultry, eggs, and dairy exports, he said, adding that for USA negotiators, “Dairy was a deal-breaker”. Here on Vancouver Island, there are about 40 dairy farms and there are fears in the wake of USCMA, some will be at risk of closing.

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US officials touted that change as a major breakthrough for American farmers, especially in Wisconsin and NY, where dairy farmers are eager to offload some of their product on Canada as they grapple with severe oversupply.

The U.S. first proposed phasing out Canada’s dairy system in NAFTA talks and eventually sought more moderate demands.

Roger Pelissero, chairman of the organisation, said: “The outcome of the negotiations will have a negative impact on the system of supply management as a whole and specifically on the vitality of Canada’s egg farming sector”.

The Dairy Farmers of Canada, which released a statement from its president saying the deal “will have a dramatic impact” on the sector and farmers, can’t answer if there will be any changes to consumer prices, wrote spokeswoman Lucie Boileau in an email.

The DFC said their industry contributes $20 billion a year to Canada’s gross domestic product. It, in part, will increase the amount of dairy that the United States can export to Canadian markets.

Gerald Weiss operates Hatview Dairy Farm southwest of Medicine Hat, a farm that has been a part of the Weiss family since 1941.

The new quotas are expected to give American dairy farmers access to up to 3.6% of Canada’s market.

Canada’s automakers appear to be the big winners from a renegotiated trade pact between Canada, the US and Mexico, while steel and aluminum makers and dairy producers have less to celebrate.

Since Canada entered the Comprehensive Economic Trade Agreement, or CETA, with the European Union and allowed more European cheese to be imported into the country, he said, there’s been growth in varieties available.

And for Gaunce with each new deal the uncertainty grows. One letter promises Canada will be exempt from any future US tariffs imposed on automobiles and auto parts as a matter of national security. Canada agreeing to grade imported wheat with the same requirements as Canadian wheat. A team with Maine International Trade Center was one of more than 150 different state and local offices on a conference call, Monday, to learn key provisions in the new agreement.

Dairy farmers have confronted tariffs of up to 270 percent on fluid milk exported to Canada as well as restrictions on other dairy products in recent years. Why, Lighthizer argued, should the United States negotiate deals that encourage investment in other countries?

“If they can put in transitional mechanisms so that it’s not a major effect all at once, we can hopefully adjust and try to regain some market share and keep going forward”, he said.

The new trade deal, a successor to NAFTA, will give the USA 3.6% additional access to the Canadian market.

“It really doesn’t address oil and gas in any respect, so that’s really crucial for us of course”, he said. “I’ve spoken with the prime minister and minister of Foreign Affairs this morning and both are committed to having those unfair tariffs removed”, Sheehan said.

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“It seems like the dairy industry has been making more concessions than they’ve been getting out of it – and this one even more so”, he said on Monday.

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