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Wyden: Canada must open door to dairy for trade deal


Canada must agree to significantly expand market access for dairy products from the United States in any Trans Pacific Partnership deal, Senate Finance Committee Ranking Member Ron Wyden, D-Ore., and Chairman Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, wrote to Canadian Ambassador Gary Doer on Friday.

Wyden and Hatch said their support for a final TPP agreement that includes Canada is contingent on Canada’s ability to meet TPP’s high standards, including with respect to market access on dairy products.

Oregon is home to major dairy operations, including Tillamook and Darigold, and exports approximately $88 million in dairy products annually, making dairy one of the state’s top five agricultural export sectors.

Utah exports more than $65 million in dairy products annually, and since 2009, Utah dairy producers have increased their dairy exports by an average of 25 percent per year. Nationally, the United States exports about $7 billion in dairy products annually, nearly half of which are destined for TPP countries.

Canada has for decades protected its dairy market through a system that currently includes restrictive tariff rate quotas on dairy imports, charging prohibitive tariffs of 200 to more than 300 percent on imports that exceed the volume limits, the lawmakers said.

They also said Canada also maintains a host of nontariff barriers, including standards that favor the use of Canadian raw milk in cheese processing over U.S. milk powder.

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