China mission secures $1 billion trade deal for Canadian canola oil

The Canola Council of Canada (CCC) commends the Government’s very successful trade mission to China to increase agricultural trade ties. The mission included participation in the Canada-China Business Forum, where Prime Minister Stephen Harper and Agriculture Minister Gerry Ritz witnessed the signing of an agreement to sell $1 billion of Canadian canola oil to China.

“This engagement with China at the highest political levels is very important to increasing export opportunities for Canadian canola,” says Patti Miller, President of the CCC. “China is one of our most important customers and this agreement ensures that they will continue to be a very promising and consistent market.”

During the trade mission, Prime Minister Harper and Chinese Premier Li Keqiang also announced the establishment of the China-Canada Economic and Financial Strategic Dialogue to deepen bilateral trade and investment ties between the two countries. “This is a helpful step towards increased economic cooperation that could facilitate better market access for Canadian canola,” says Miller. 

Canola is Canada’s number one agricultural export to China, valued at $2.83 billion in 2013. “Canadian canola also plays a significant role in China’s health and wealth,” says Miller. Canadian canola products contribute about US$3.6 billion to the Chinese economy annually, including over 16,000 jobs, and can help reduce China’s prevalence of cardiovascular disease (CVD) when used in place of saturated fat. About 290 million (over 22%) Chinese adults have CVD and 114 million (almost 12%) have diabetes, which puts them at greater risk for CVD. 

“In June we launched the CanolaInfo Mandarin website to help promote the health benefits of Canadian canola oil to Chinese consumers,” says Miller, noting that China is the number one vegetable oil consumer in the world at 30 million tonnes annually.

“Our industry’s continued growth and success depends on creating stable and open global trade environments,” says Miller. “We are thankful for the Government of Canada’s leadership and continued effort to expand trade opportunities and market access in China, positioning our industry for economic growth throughout the canola value chain.”

The Canola Council of Canada is a full value chain organization representing canola growers, value added processors, life science companies and exporters. Keep it Coming 2025 is the strategic plan to ensure the canola industry’s continued growth, demand, stability and success –  achieving 52 bushels per acre to meet global market demand of 26 million metric tonnes by the year 2025.

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Media may contact:
Heidi Rubeniuk, Director, Communications
204-982-2108
rubeniukh@canolacouncil.org