Minister Fast Marks Second Anniversary of Canada-Colombia Free Trade Agreement

Trade agreement has encouraged Canadian exports and promoted job creation and economic growth for Canadian families, workers and businesses

August 15, 2013 - The Honourable Ed Fast, Minister of International Trade, today marked the second anniversary of the Canada-Colombia Free Trade Agreement. The free trade agreement (FTA), along with the related agreements on labour cooperation and the environment, came into force on August 15, 2011.

“Our government’s ambitious job-creating, pro-trade plan is benefiting Canadian workers and their families,” said Minister Fast. “The trade agreement with Colombia has encouraged significant growth in Canadian exports. In fact, since this agreement came into force, Canadian exports to Colombia have increased by almost 29 percent.”  

Colombia is Canada’s second-largest merchandise export destination in Latin America and the Caribbean, offering opportunities in the extractive, agriculture and agri-food, and manufacturing sectors. In 2012, two-way merchandise trade between Canada and Colombia reached nearly $1.5 billion.

The Canada-Colombia FTA has reduced trade barriers by eliminating tariffs on Canadian exports, providing Canadians with improved access to the Colombian market. The agreement also provides a more predictable, transparent and rules-based trading environment for Canadian investors.

“Creating new opportunities and opening up markets for Canadian workers, farmers and businesses is our government’s priority,” said Minister Fast. “We look forward to building on our already-close trade and investment ties with Colombia in the years to come.”

This year marks 60 years of full bilateral diplomatic relations between Canada and Colombia. Indeed, recent high-level visits to Colombia, including visits by Prime Minister Stephen Harper and Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird, attest to the strength of the Canada-Colombia relationship.

Canada’s engagement in the Americas has been a foreign policy priority since 2007, with a particular focus on increasing economic opportunities in the hemisphere. Canada is also an observer of the Pacific Alliance and has FTAs with each of the four members (Chile, Colombia, Mexico and Peru).

For more information, please visit Canada-Colombia Free Trade Agreement.

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For further information, media representatives may contact:

Rudy Husny
Press Secretary
Office of the Honourable Ed Fast
Minister of International Trade
613-992-7332
rudy.husny@international.gc.ca

Media Relations Office
Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development Canada
613-995-1874
media@international.gc.ca
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