New North American Trade Deal Emphasizes Domestic Production, Opens Canadian Dairy Market

Alberta grain producers are pleased the USMCA retains most of the benefits of NAFTA

Alberta grain producers are pleased the USMCA retains most of the benefits of NAFTA

With news this morning of a revised NAFTA deal, now called the US-Mexico-Canada Agreement, den Haan says the Prime Minister let dairy farmers down.

The terms reached between the US and Mexico on higher wage thresholds will also be positive for Canadian producers, said Unifor president Jerry Dias, who welcomed the deal.

The so-called U.S. -Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) will widen foreign access to the domestic dairy market by about 3.6 per cent, according to analysts, higher than the 3.25 per cent that was conceded by Canada under the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP). A similar agreement between Mexico and the United States preserves duty-free access to the USA market for vehicles that comply with the agreement's rules of origin.

The new trade deal between the United States, Mexico and Canada is expected to benefit Wisconsin dairy producers, thanks to some last-minute concessions made by Canada. One, it preserves and enhances the Mexico trade relationship.

At a press conference yesterday, Trudeau predicted the new pact would be "profoundly beneficial for our economy" and "the most important progressive reform for North American workers in a generation".

"We are very disappointed that the administration has missed a huge opportunity to help rebuild and strengthen our USA cattle industry", he said.

Also, steep tariffs that Trump imposed in May on steel from Canada and Mexico are still in effect; Robertson says Canada was hopeful the trade agreement could help change that.

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Trudeau said those were being negotiated on a separate track, and that the talks continue. Aside from the concessions affecting the dairy industry, Angus said he liked how Canada maintained Chapter 19 and 20 provisions. "And while the slightly expanded market will offer small benefits to some US farmers, it does nothing to reduce the overproduction at the heart of our dairy crisis", Goodman said. Maxime Bernier split from the party last month to launch his own entity, calling the Conservatives "intellectually and morally corrupt" in part because of its support for dairy protections.

Class 7 will end under the proposed trade deal, which Martin said will be good for farmers along the border.

The American Dairy Coalition says getting rid of Canadas “Class 7” milk pricing system opens up the Canadian dairy market to more USA sellers.

What dairy farmers were offered in the deal is "mainly symbolic", and represents only a small reduction in Canadian protectionism, Economist Ethan Harris of Bank of America Merrill Lynch said in a note to clients, CNBC reported. "We fail to see how this deal can be good for the 220,000 Canadian families that depend on dairy for their livelihood". Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer says, to him, the Liberals appear to have caved to demands from the Trump administration.

"They told me they were anxious", Trudeau said of his meeting with milk producers. Canada fought hard to retain Chapter 19, a holdover from NAFTA that USA trade ambassador Robert Lighthizer worked tooth and nail to eliminate.

He added that the deal allows for "a lot more substandard milk for the Canadian consumer".

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