Canada Reaches Trans-Pacific Trade Deal

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CBJ — Canada is scheduled to be part of a huge Pacific Rim free trade zone deal, but it looks like it is going to come at a price to certain key economic sectors, including the softening of some protective measures for the country’s dairy, poultry and auto industries in order to gain entry into the multi-country agreement.

Negotiators for the 12 members of the Trans-Pacific Partnership struck a tentative deal in Atlanta early Monday morning that will eliminate most tariffs in a region spanning about 40% of the international economy.

Canada’s Minister of International Trade Ed Fast says The TPP represents a market of nearly 800 million people and a combined GDP of $28.5 trillion.

“The TPP will deepen Canada’s trading relationships with the dynamic and fast-growing markets in the Asia-Pacific Region,” Fast says. This historic free trade agreement will significantly benefit Canadians from coast to coast to coast by creating jobs & economic growth.

The federal government will spend $4.3-billion over 15 years to compensate dairy, chicken and egg farmers, who are ceding what Canadian officials called “limited access” to their now highly protected markets under the TPP deal. The subsidies will “keep producers whole,” according to a government press release.

The deal took several extra days to complete due to some posturing over details on autos and patent protection for drugs and agricultural products.