Dear Sir or Madame:

Farmers are running out of time and patience with the federal liberals when dealing with Canada’s protectionist stand at the WTO trade talks. Canada can’t promote true liberalization of agriculture while aggressively protecting the supply-managed sector of our industry. According to the WTO, Canada is the world’s third largest agri-food exporter behind the United States and the European Union.  Remember that 90% of agriculture in Canada depends on trade or is directly associated with the export side. The idea of protecting 10% to the detriment of 90% is not only unacceptable it is also economically unsound. Below are recommendations under the three pillars of support to agriculture that MP’s should bring to the liberal government.

MARKET ACCESS RECOMMENDATIONS:

  • Eliminate or severely limit the number of “sensitive” tariff lines allowed by each country.
  • Push for Canada to lead by example and demand tariff reduction for all products and implementation of tariff caps.
  • Push for Canada to allow greater market access to our “sensitive products.
  • Remind Canada that 90% of agriculture in Canada depends on trade or is directly associated with the export side and the market access issue relates directly to each and everyone’s bottom line.
  • Push for Canada not to align itself with protectionist countries or interfere with progress in the talks towards an ambitious outcome in market access.

DOMESTIC SUPPORT RECOMMENDATIONS:

  • Push Canada to support high overall cuts and a low percentage/value of production cap on product-specific AMS. Attempts by Canada to preserve the level of Market Price Support to supply-managed sectors within AMS should not be at the cost of an ambitious outcome.
  • Push Canada to support the reduction of the de minimis exemption.
  • Encourage Canada to continue to push for strict criteria on blue box support, and stringent revision of the green box.

EXPORT SUBSIDIES RECOMMENDATIONS:

  • Push Canada to reaffirm its original negotiating position on the elimination of all forms of export subsidies in the fastest possible time.
  • Encourage Canada to neither waste negotiating energy nor jeopardize the elimination of all forms of export subsidies by intransigence on the monopoly power of the CWB.
  • Push Canada to be prepared to negotiate the export monopoly powers of the CWB in return for substantial commitments in reduction of domestic support and market access from our trading partners.

Sincerely,

[your name]