Tuesday, November 24, 2020

Bloc backbencher defends supply management

Backbench Bloc Québécois MP Louis Plamondon has introduced a private member’s bill that would bar Canadian trade negotiators from allowing any increase in low-tariff imports of dairy and poultry products.

The bill is due for debate later today.

Bill C-216 would amend the Department of Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development Act to state that the minister "must not make any commitment ... by future trade treaty or agreement" that would increase the tariff rate quota (TRQ) applicable to dairy products, poultry or eggs, or reduce the tariff applicable to those goods when they are imported in excess of that quota.

"Something very important for milk and egg and poultry production is given away as a token and nothing comes back for those producers, so we say in the law that this should not happen anymore," Bloc Leader Yves-François Blanchet said.

"The Liberal government says, 'Oh, we will will compensate you. And you know what, they don't," he said.

The debate comes just after Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and United Kingdom Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced an agreement to extend European Union trade rules after the U.K. leaves the E.U.

Then, they said, negotiations will resume towards a more detailed trade agreement.

The U.K. has already indicated it wants to sell more cheese to Canadians.