Today Prime Minister Harper continued his trade mission in Latin America with a visit to Costa Rica where he announced that Canada and Costa Rica will commence negotiations to modernize the Canada-Costa Rica Free Trade Agreement. The current agreement with Costa Rica came into effect in 2002. Unfortunately, access for Canadian beef to Costa Rica was excluded from the 2002 agreement and the 15 per cent tariff has remained fully in effect since that time.
CCA Vice President and Foreign Trade Chair Martin Unrau welcomed the news that efforts are commencing to rectify the failure of the original negotiations with respect to beef access.
“The potential to export Canadian beef to Costa Rica may be small, in the neighbourhood of a quarter million dollars per year, but it is unacceptable to have beef remain excluded entirely from any agreement. We want this omission to be corrected,” he said.