Opinion: Judging the TPP

What we do know is that the TPP will have tremendous impact on the Canadian economy – particularly here in Chilliwack.

So what do Thomas Mulcair and Donald Trump have in common?

Both rejected the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade deal before it was released.

To be fair, trade deals traditionally have a polarizing effect on people. So it’s not that surprising that the leader of the Canadian New Democratic Party and the bombastic presidential hopeful found reasons to hate the historic agreement.

What is disappointing is that they hated it so quickly.

The trade deal agreed to on Sunday had an eight-year gestation. It involves 12 Pacific Rim countries that comprise 40 per cent of the world economy.

Specific details have yet to be released. But what we do know is that the TPP will have tremendous impact on the Canadian economy – particularly here in Chilliwack.

The goal of the agreement is to ease trade restrictions between the participating countries, enhancing the movement of goods, and opening new markets that had previously been closed.

Canada, as an exporting nation, benefits when trade restrictions are removed.

However, there is a cost. And that is what worried dairy farmers and poultry producers here.

Both sectors are highly regulated under Canada’s supply management program. The program provides stability in an industry that might otherwise fall victim to the vagaries of an unrestricted free market. Countries wanting access to our market have traditionally cited our supply management system as an unfair impediment to trade.

Early rumours suggested supply management might be one a sacrifice Canada would have to make to join the TPP.

Fortunately, that does not seem to be the case. There will be some market share lost, says the BC Dairy Association. But the organization acknowledges it could have been mush worse – a sentiment echoed by the Dairy Farmers of Canada.

Still, there remains much to be learned about the trade deal. And Canadians will have the opportunity for that review. It must be ratified here and in the 11 other participating nations before it comes into effect.

All we can hope is that political leaders take the time to read the thing before pronouncing a verdict.

Just Posted

WATCH: Paralyzed ex motocross champion is returning to Chilliwack for book launch

Brent Worrall says he is living proof that no one should ever give up hope

Rainbow crosswalk count will rise to 16 in Chilliwack

So far 11 rainbows are painted and five planned, all since council denied the first proposal in September

Chilliwack’s Atchelitz Threshermen’s Association hosts open house to raise funds for new roofs, lighting

The association is inviting the public to check out some of Chilliwack’s farming history this weekend

Inspections find 10 out of 14 residential care facilities in Chilliwack with violations

Fraser Health regularly posts inspection reports for care homes and child care centres

Cleanup of homeless encampments near Sweltzer Creek almost complete on Chilliwack River

Next step for stewards and FVRD is conducting an inventory any other camps on the river

VIDEO: Canadian allergists’ group wants Benadryl behind the counter due to side effects

Some doctors say the medication is over-used because of its easy availability

Yelling at your dog might hurt its long-term mental health: study

Researchers find dogs trained using negative reinforcement are more ‘pessimistic’

Vancouver Island soap company releases Lucky Lager beer soap

Beer-infused olive oil soap comes out just in time for holiday shopping

Jagmeet Singh says he’ll vote against throne speech if NDP requests not met

Singh is to meet with Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on Thursday

Workers’ camp at LNG facility in Kitimat takes shape

Extensive worker camp now being assembled

Former B.C. youth pastor guilty on one of five sexual assault allegations

Judge cites reasonable doubt in finding Cloverdale couple not guilty of majority of charges

238 and counting: Vancouver gelato shop sets Guinness World record for most flavours

Vince Misceo has come up with 588 different flavours over the decades

Killer who fled to Taiwan day after shooting B.C. man over $80 sentenced 13 years later

The sentence comes 13 years after Shaoxin Zhang, 19, was killed in a Burnaby parking lot

Most Read