Canadian Pork Council: Protectionism Is Killing Trade


Mike Davis, Southern Farm Network

November 17, 2021   


The USMCA, CUSMA, the New NAFTA, or whatever you want to call it…the third anniversary of its official signing into law is at the end of this month. And the founder of Cereals Canada believes that the USMCA might not be perfect, but it is probably the best major trade agreement that Canada has in place right now. But Cam Dahl also says that in this age of nationalistic trade protectionism, governments need to do more to ensure the ongoing success of the trade they negotiate. Cam Dahl, who left Cereals Canada earlier this year to become the Canadian Pork Council’s general manager, believes the time is past when a federal government can negotiate the deal, sign the papers, and then walk away to leave industries and companies to make them work.


Over the past decade, nationalistic and protectionist forces looking for ways to end-run free trade agreements have become too strong. It wasn’t always like this.


“Until about the mid 2000’s it was an age of growth in trade, really strong trade agreements being negotiated around the world. And that has changed. Now we’re seeing a much different environment, where countries have negotiated agreement, but they’re finding other ways to block trade. And we really do need our governments to go back and say ‘what do we need to do to break up this log jam?’ ensuring that the agreements we have are really doing what we expected in facilitating trade.”


Cam Dahl says the best thing about USMCA is that, for the most part, it just updated NAFTA which, when it came to agriculture, had generally proven itself to be a sound and workable agreement...