CFA welcomes FTA negotiations with Morocco
OTTAWA - The Canadian Federation of Agriculture (CFA) welcomed today's announcement today by Prime Minister Stephen Harper of new free-trade negotiations with Morocco, an attractive market for grains and oilseeds, in particular. The Prime Minister made the announcement during a visit to the Moroccan capital of Rabat, accompanied by International Trade Minister Peter Van Loan, Agriculture and Agri-Food Minister Gerry Ritz, and a delegation of Canadian agricultural exporters and industry groups.
"The CFA is pleased with the government's efforts in launching an official negotiation to enhance agricultural exports to Morocco," said CFA President Ron Bonnett. "Grain producers and exporters including the Canadian Wheat Board have worked hard on identifying opportunities to increase exports, and the Morocco negotiations are an example of farm groups and governments partnering to generate economic growth."
"The CFA encourages the government to focus its approach on bilateral and multilateral agreements in areas of the world where there are significant trade opportunities; where Canada hasn't previously developed valuable trade relationships," said Bonnett.
According to Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, Canada exported about $260 million worth of goods to Morocco in 2009, just under 0.4% of our imports. Morocco has a population of 32 million and is largely self-sufficient in agricultural production except for grains and oilseeds, where they import 40% of their requirements for about $2 billion.