Real action on trade, rail infrastructure and farm competitiveness missing from Budget
OTTAWA (February 28, 2018) – Canada’s grain farmers welcomed some positive news in Budget 2018, but are concerned about the lack of action on key priorities for farmers. Budget 2017 established an ambitious target to increase agri-food exports to $75 billion by 2025 but Budget 2018 did little to deliver on it and other priorities for the sector.
“Grain farmers welcome the Budget’s commitments on trade, regulatory reform and tax changes,” said Grain Growers of Canada (GGC) President, Jeff Nielsen. “However these commitments are baby steps at a time when a giant leap is needed.”
GGC looks forward to working with the government to better understand how the commitment for regulatory reform, the small business tax changes, the Low Carbon Leadership Fund and the investments in the Canadian Food Inspection Agency will benefit the hard-working middle-class families on grain farms across the country.
“Grain growers are encouraged by the commitment to expanded trade in Asia,” said Grain Growers of Canada (GGC) President, Jeff Nielsen. “But while more trade commissioners are nice, what our economy really needs is ratification of the CPTPP before Parliament breaks for summer, the launch of Free Trade Negotiations with China and the passage of Bill C-49 to secure a rail transportation system that works.”
GGC welcomed the announcement of a Farm Credit Canada (FCC) lending product for women entrepreneurs which demonstrates the Government’s recognition of the important role that women play in the past, present and future of the agriculture industry.
GGC also took note that $100 million earmarked for funding for Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada programs for 2018 will go unspent. GGC looks forward to more details on the impact this will have on farmers across Canada and on what opportunities may be missed to promote the growth of the rural economy.
Grain Growers of Canada provides a strong national voice for over 50,000 active and successful grain, oilseed and pulse producers through its 13 provincial, regional and national grower groups. Our mission and mandate are to pursue a policy environment that maximizes global competitiveness and to influence federal policy on behalf of independent Canadian grain farmers and their associations.
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