Canada’s open agricultural subsidization schemes surrounding pork production have Trans-Pacific Partnership member countries (the U.S., New Zealand and Australia) expressing concerns after Canada was recently admitted into the partnership at the G20 summit.
Canada’s federal and provincial governments bestow countervailable subsidies on the Canadian pig industry that cause significant distortions to overseas markets such as Australia, the U.S. and New Zealand, according to Australian Pork Limited CEO Andrew Spencer. "Domestic subsidy programs are generally not within the scope of free trade agreements," said Spencer. "However, in this case Canadian agricultural subsidies are so wide ranging and have such a broad and far-reaching impact on overseas markets it is on these grounds we, along with the U.S. and New Zealand, urge the [Trans-Pacific Partnership] negotiators and governments to deal with these issues fairly as part of the process.”
Australian, New Zealand and U.S. pork producers have said that the Canadian government’s actions are counterproductive to the overarching philosophy of the Trans-Pacific Partnership's goals and ambitions. "Subsidy programs are antithetical to free trade and to the spirit of the Trans-Pacific Partnership negotiations that Canada is entering,” said R.C. Hunt, president of the U.S. National Pork Producers Council.