An alliance of cattlemen representing Australia, Canada, New Zealand and the United States recently signed a letter, announcing their support for a comprehensive Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement.
"As a collective global beef industry, if we are going to feed a growing world population we need to facilitate the open and unrestricted trade of food around the world,” said Cattle Council president Andrew Ogilvie, from Kingston SE in South Australia. “By removing trade barriers and tariffs to create fair and open access for all nations, the world’s population will have equal opportunity to a reliable and safe food supply without trade barriers inflating the cost of that food."
The agreement is based on ten core principles, ensuring any agreement must be comprehensive and must eliminate all tariffs and market access barriers while emphasizing the importance of unfettered trade.
“Working to achieve a TPP without product exclusions, especially in agriculture, that also eliminates tariffs and other market access barriers in the TPP region, is a goal worth striving for,” said Canadian Cattlemen’s Association (CCA) president Martin Unrau, a cow-calf producer from MacGregor, Manitoba. “I am pleased to see momentum building in the TPP negotiations and am hopeful we can achieve a comprehensive result soon.”
The agreement also relies on risk based scientific decision making, based on international science-based standards.
“We are a strong supporter of this agreement and others like it, on the grounds that they increase market access and provide stable export markets based in internationally recognized scientific standards,” said National Cattlemen’s Beef Association (NCBA) president Scott George, a cattle and dairy producer from Cody, Wyo. “With 96 percent of the global population living outside of the United States, it is essential that we take measures to enable trade and expand market access, both to stimulate the economy and more importantly, to feed a growing global population.
The Five Nations Beef Alliance (FNBA) is also asking the negotiating countries to push for arrangements where beef producers are all treated the same.
“Beef and Lamb New Zealand is delighted to be a signatory to this Five Nations Beef Alliance Joint Communique that outlines core principles to ensure the TPP negotiations fulfill the promise of a high-quality agreement that can serve as a standard for future trade agreements,” said Mike Petersen, chairman of Beef and Lamb New Zealand from Waipukurau, Hawkes Bay. “The TPP needs to be an ambitious, high quality, comprehensive agreement, with no product or sector exclusions, address non-tariff barriers, and be enforceable. The more we can work together with our international counterpart organizations on these trade issues the more likely it is to result in a win-win for all.”
The FNBA comprises the Cattle Council of Australia, Canadian Cattlemen’s Association, Confederacion Nacional de Organizaciones Ganaderas, Beef + Lamb New Zealand and the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association. Together, FNBA represents producers from countries that account for one-third of global beef production and approximately half of global beef exports.