Ottawa, Ontario – Today, members of the Standing Committee on International Trade members amended a Conservative motion inviting the Ministers of Agriculture and Agri-Food and International Trade Diversification to appear before Canadians and outline what the Liberal government is doing to restore market access to China for Canadian canola. However, the Liberals voted down inviting the Minister of Foreign Affairs as a key witness, despite Opposition requests for answers to specifically prevent further retaliatory actions against Canada due to Justin Trudeau’s failure to manage Canada’s relationship with China.
“Canada’s canola is of the highest quality and the safest in the world,” said Randy Hoback, Deputy Shadow Minister for International Trade Diversification. “The only reason China has blocked our exports is because of Justin Trudeau’s failed leadership and bungling of Canada’s bilateral relationship with our second largest trading partner. Without an Ambassador to deal with the situation on the ground in China, we need the Minister of Foreign Affairs to tell Canadians what the government is doing to restore the market access that is vital for the livelihoods of canola farmers and their families.”
According to the Canola Council of Canada, 90% of canola grown in Canada is exported as seed, oil, or meal to 50 markets around the world. Approximately 40% of those exports go to China, a market valued at over $3.5 billion annually. Market access for exports is the lifeblood of Canada’s canola industry.
“Over half of the agri-food products grown in Canada are exported, making Canada one of the most trade-dependent agricultural sectors in the world,” said Luc Berthold, Shadow Minister for Agriculture and Agri-Food. “With spring planting season fast approaching, farmers need to know what the federal government’s plan is for protecting and advancing the interests of our world-class canola exporters, and today Justin Trudeau’s Liberals failed to provide the full support needed to resolve this concerning issue.”