Harper Government Highlights Widespread Benefits to Manitoba of Historic Canada-EU Trade Agreement

Deeper trade with European Union will create new jobs and opportunities across Manitoba

October 25, 2013 - The Honourable Shelly Glover, Minister of Canadian Heritage and Official Languages, and the Honourable Candice Bergen, Minister of State (Social Development), today underlined how workers and businesses in key economic sectors throughout Manitoba will greatly benefit from the Canada-European Union Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement. An agreement-in-principle for this historic deal was announced by Prime Minister Stephen Harper and European Commission President José Manuel Barroso last week. Ministers Glover and Bergen were joined at an event at the Winnipeg International Airport by many of Manitoba’s key business and industry leaders.

“This historic agreement is Canada’s most ambitious ever and is a big win for Manitoba’s workers and families,” said Minister Glover. “Workers and families who rely on key sectors of Manitoba’s economy for their livelihoods, including those in the agricultural, manufacturing and chemicals and plastics sectors, stand to benefit from the preferential access this agreement provides to the largest and most lucrative market in the world.”

Canadian agricultural exports to the EU face high tariffs averaging 13.9 percent. When the Canada-EU trade agreement is fully implemented, over 95 percent of EU agricultural tariffs will be eliminated. In addition, the Agreement will provide new market access opportunities for key agricultural exports, such as beef, pork and bison.

“Our world-class agricultural and agri-food sector is a key driver of Manitoba’s economy,” said Minister Bergen. “Eliminating tariffs on these high-quality products will create the conditions to increase sales, which will directly benefit hard-working Manitobans through new jobs, new opportunities and higher wages.”

Manitoba’s agricultural exports to the EU were worth an average of $139.9 million annually between 2010 and 2012, making agriculture Manitoba’s largest exporting sector. Employing almost 34,000 Manitobans, the sector is a key driver of the provincial economy.

“Our government is focused on what matters to all Canadians: creating new jobs and new opportunities,” said the Honourable Ed Fast, Minister of International Trade. “The Canada-EU trade agreement will generate substantial gains across all key economic sectors, covering every region of Canada. In fact, Canada will be one of the only developed countries to have preferential access to the world’s two largest markets: the European Union and the United States. The competitive edge and combined access to these markets—and their more than 800 million affluent consumers—will make Canada the envy of trading nations worldwide. It will also make Canada an even more attractive destination for investors and manufacturers, and this in turn will create thousands of new jobs and new opportunities for Canadians.”

The EU is the world’s largest integrated economy, with more than 500 million consumers and a GDP of $17 trillion.

For more information on how the Canada-EU trade agreement will benefit Manitoba, please visit Benefits for Manitoba.

For more information on the vast benefits of this agreement to every region of Canada, please visit actionplan.gc.ca/CETA.

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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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