Canada and Japan have agreed to enter free-trade talks. Canadian prime minister Stephen Harper and his Japanese counterpart Yoshihiko Noda made the announcement following a bilateral meeting in Tokyo this weekend.
The news follows a recently released joint study estimating that such an agreement could mean gains of up to $3.8 billion a year in Canadian gross domestic product, with Canadian exports to Japan increasing by as much as 67%.
Maple Leaf Foods
As a consequence, Canadian meat processor Maple Leaf Foods announced its support for the negotiations between Canada’s federal government and the Government of Japan towards achieving a free trade agreement that could significantly benefit Canada’s agri-food sector.
“We congratulate both governments on taking the important first steps towards this historic partnership,” said Michael McCain, president and CEO, Maple Leaf Foods.
“Maple Leaf Foods has had a strong presence in Japan for many years, serving many valued Japanese customers with high quality fresh chilled and frozen pork. This agreement could unlock tremendous opportunities to increase the supply of Canadian pork products to a priority international market for Canada’s agri-food sector. We encourage and are hopeful for a timely and ambitious outcome of these negotiations.”
• Maple Leaf Foods