The Canadian trade policy is constantly evolving and aims to strengthen its networkthrough the signing of free trade agreement. After CETA, TPP11 and other agreements under negotiation, (NAFTA, Canada-CARICOM, etc.), Canada started an initial exploratory phase for the conclusion of a free trade agreement with the trading bloc MERCOSUR (Southern Common Market), which includes Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay and Uruguay.
Last February 23, the Minister of International Trade of Canada, François-Philippe Champagne, announced the positive outcome of this first contact: the common intention to deepen trade relations, expressed through a Canada-Mercosur joint statement, issued on the sidelines the World Trade Organization meetings held in Marrakesh in October 2017.
The intensification of dialogue with the world’s fourth largest trade bloc, with 260 million people and a GDP of over than 3 trillion dollars, represents for Canada an opportunity for a new market in fast-growing countries and a further increase in employment for the Canadian middle class. From auto spare parts to chemical products, from wood to seafood, this important market is indeed mature for Canadian products and producers. But a potential free trade agreement would also benefit the Mercosur countries, thanks to a reduction in prices on many of the exports to Canada, for the benefit of Canadian consumers who would have the opportunity to access to clothing or furniture products at more affordable prices.
As reiterated by the Minister Champagne: “Canada is engaged in a progressive and diversified business agenda that focuses on the interests of the Canadian middle class. More trade means growth, and growth means more jobs, which is why the government continues to explore new opportunities to negotiate free trade agreements with fast-growing global markets. “