In a joint statement issued March 11, Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper and South Korean President Park Geun Hye announced that the two countries have concluded negotiations on a free trade agreement. The Canadian Cattlemen’s Association (CCA) issued a news release praising the FTA. A statement was also issued by the Canadian Pork Council.
According to CCA, the tariff reduction schedule for Canadian beef and beef offal is as follows:
- 40 percent tariff on fresh and frozen beef eliminated in 15 equal annual steps.
- Transitional safeguard starting at 17,769 mt in year one, growing 3 percent per year to reach 26,877 mt by year 15.
- 18 percent tariff on offal eliminated in 11 equal annual steps.
Details of the tariff elimination schedule for pork were not immediately available, but news reports indicate that tariffs on fresh and frozen pork are eliminated over 13 years.
While all major pork suppliers have seen exports to Korea decline over the past two years, Canada has been in an especially difficult position as the only supplier without an FTA. While the United States is the only major beef supplier to have an FTA with Korea already in force, a new agreement between Australia and Korea is expected to take effect in 2015.
USMEF will provide further updates on the Canada-Korea FTA as more details become available.