Tue, 26 May 2015
US - Manitoba's Minister of Agriculture is hopeful the latest World Trade Organization ruling on US Mandatory Country of Origin Labelling will result in a return to historical patterns of trade between Canada and the US in cattle and hogs, writes Bruce Cochrane.
On Monday the World Trade Organization upheld a series of rulings that US Country of Origin Labelling discriminates against imported livestock in violation of its international trade obligations.
The rejection of the final US appeal opens the door for Canada and Mexico to apply for authorisation to impose retaliatory tariffs on products imported from the US.
Manitoba Agriculture Minister Ron Kostyshyn (pictured) believes the opportunity to move forward with historical trade rules is a win for all sides.
We continue to work with the federal government on the ruling and obviously, from the beef and the pork sector in the province, we would like to resume historical events that the migration of animals do take place, so that at the end of the day that not only from the Manitoba Canada side benefits, but also Mexico and US benefit, because as we know US side processors were having some challenges sustaining their quota for beef or pork production.
We would like to go back to the original agreement, that we could move products freely between the three countries, because also not only Canada but Mexico is a big part of this.
We just feel that food safety is in place and traceability is in place that we have the prefect opportunity to resume business as we've done historically.
Mr Kostyshyn acknowledged that retaliatory tariffs are not the preferred route but options are limited so tariffs may be the option to send a strong signal of the importance we place on the free movement of pork and beef between Canada and the US.