The Canadian meat industry has welcomed the signing of a Canada-Ukraine Free Trade Agreement which represents an important milestone in the Canada–Ukraine bilateral relationship and will create new opportunities for businesses in both countries.
Canada and Ukraine will now proceed with their respective domestic implementation processes in order to bring CUFTA into force.
“I am very pleased that the Canadian government has signed the free trade agreement with Ukraine,” said Canadian Meat Council President Joe Reda.
“There is a long term interest in trade with Ukraine, not only as a supplier of high quality meat protein to Ukraine’s 45 million citizens, but also in the context of Ukraine’s access to the European Union and its trade with the countries of eastern Europe,” added Mr Reda.
Canada and Ukraine have enjoyed close relations since Canada became the first western country to recognize Ukraine’s independence on December 2, 1991. The bilateral relationship is strengthened by warm people-to-people ties, rooted in the 1.3 million strong Ukrainian-Canadian community.
“A strategic priority of Canada’s export-dependent meat industry is competitive access to every country in the world,” said Canadian Meat Council Executive Director Jim Laws.
“The eventual entry into force of a free trade agreement with Ukraine will represent another concrete step toward the realization of this important industry objective,” added Mr Laws.
When fully implemented, the Canada-Ukraine free trade agreement will provide duty-free access to Ukraine for an unlimited quantity of beef and veal, duty-free access for 20,000 tonnes of frozen pork, and duty-free access for an unlimited quantity of fresh chilled pork.
Canada’s meat processing industry includes some 400 federally registered establishments, providing safe, high quality protein for Canadian consumers as well as adding jobs and contributing to economic activity in both rural and urban communities across Canada. With annual sales of $23.6 billion, beef exports of $2.2 billion, pork exports of $3.4 billion and 65,000 jobs, the Canadian meat industry is the largest component of this country’s food processing sector.