The Honourable Marie-Claude Bibeau, Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food, is in Washington, D.C. today to reaffirm Canada’s commitment to collaborating with the U.S. and other partners within the Western Hemisphere Agricultural Group, also known as Ag5. Together, this alliance representing almost a quarter of global exports is working to develop solutions to regulatory challenges. Facilitating trade through science-based rules will help farmers feed a growing world population, while driving industry growth and providing solutions to climate change.
Minister Bibeau met with U.S. Secretary of Agriculture, Sonny Perdue, Mexico’s Secretary of Agriculture and Rural Development, Victor Villalobos, and Argentina’s Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Livestock, Luis Basterra, as well as other key leaders in agriculture, including the President of American Farm Bureau Federation, Zippy Duvall. Minister Bibeau emphasized the need for predictable rules and science-based trade, that sustainability is defined by social, environmental and economic factors, and that innovation has an essential role in feeding a growing world population. Minister Bibeau also underscored that the new NAFTA is a key priority for Canada and that the Government is committed to working with Parliamentarians and Canadian stakeholders to implement the Agreement as quickly as possible.
At the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA)’s 96th Annual Agricultural Outlook Forum, Minister Bibeau participated in a panel discussion with Secretary Perdue, Secretary Villalobos, and Minister Basterra. They discussed the importance of collaboration, innovation, food security, and supporting science and risk-based regulatory environments. During the panel, Minister Bibeau also stressed the importance of proactive collaboration with trading partners as part of North America’s preparedness strategy to help mitigate the risks of African swine fever should it be detected in the region.
Minister Bibeau also hosted a dialogue with key U.S. stakeholders from the Washington Agricultural Roundtable, Women in International Trade, and the U.S. Food and Ag Dialogue to discuss the importance of the Canada-U.S. trading relationship.
“To help Canadian producers, processors and exporters succeed in global markets, it is essential to maintain strong relationships with our international partners. Our Government is committed to working with our allies to promote regulatory approaches that facilitate trade while helping Canada’s agricultural sector to bring safe, high-quality products to international markets. The goal of these actions is to increase annual agri-food exports to $75 billion by 2025.”
The Honourable Marie-Claude Bibeau, Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food
Canada is the largest market for the United States—larger than China, Japan and the United Kingdom combined.
In 2019, Canada exported over $38.9 billion in agri-food and seafood to the United States and Mexico.
The Western Hemisphere Agricultural Group (Ag5) (Argentina, Brazil, Canada, Mexico, and the United States) was formed in May 2019 on the margins of the G20 in Japan with a mandate to promote transparent and predictable trade rules. In 2018, it represented nearly a quarter of global exports in agricultural products.