Italian Chamber of Commerce in Canada West | Assolatte – Italian dairy exports hit a record in Canada: the benefits produced by CETA and the new Canadian food safety regulations
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10 Nov Assolatte – Italian dairy exports hit a record in Canada: the benefits produced by CETA and the new Canadian food safety regulations

Italy is the world’s leading cheese supplier in Canada. Italy has also surpassed France, the historical supplier of Canada in this sector, with a market share of 23% of total Canadian dairy imports: about 1/3 of EU exports to Canada is guaranteed by Italian cheeses. The latest ISTAT surveys showed a growth rate of + 20% of our exports in the first seven months of this year compared to the same period of the previous year, for a value that exceeds € 32 mln.

 

The extraordinary results and the overview of the economic and trade relations between Italy and Canada in the dairy sector were presented by Assolatte, at the seminar organized in Milan on 5 November by the Association representing the companies in the sector. The initiative entitled “Canada: between new health legislation and trade agreements” has provided a complex overview of the measures introduced by the CETA agreement regarding the exports of European dairy products to Canada and the new Canadian food safety regulation, presenting the reports of experts in the sector – including that of Paolo Quattrocchi, equity partner of Nctm Law Firm, vice president of the Italian Chamber of Commerce in West Canada and director of the Centro Studi Italia-Canada 

 

“The relations with Canada are very strategic and complex. For companies strongly committed to exports, being constantly updated is vital to optimize and simplify our international sales. This kind of Meetings, especially thanks to the intervention of important experts in the field, allow you to have an overview and at the same time to investigate the technical issues that we face every day. It is essential to continue working with Canada to maintain the trust relationship that many of us have built with difficulty over the years”, said the president of the organizing body, Dr. Giuseppe Ambrosi.

 

PROTECTION OF GEOGRAPHICAL INDICATIONS OF THE DAIRY SECTOR

 

To open the proceedings, Mr. Paolo Quattrocchi, who focused on the measures envisaged   by Canadian legislation to protect Italian geographical indications recognized by CETA.  He did not neglect a deepening of the unrecognized Geographical Indications and the modalities to be implemented in order to have a form of protection in Canadian law precisely because of the changes to the protection system prepared by Canadian legislation as a consequence of the signing and entry into force of CETA.     

The director of the CSIC then analyzed the system for the distribution of import quotas of dairy products ex CETA implemented by the Canadian authorities, the control system on the effective use of the former CETA quotas by the different categories of importers as structured by Global Affair Canada, also with reference to the sanctions regime for the non-use of import licenses attributed to the outcome of the tenders that are annually called.

 

SHARES AND DISTRIBUTIONS PROVIDED BY CETA FOR CHEESE IMPORTS

 

As for the new tariff quotas and the measures provided by CETA for the dairy sector, Mr. Bernard O’Connor, NCTM Law Firm partner, has provided an analytical framework on the quotas of European cheeses imported from Canada and the related regulatory parameters, also tracing the path of the determination of the prices of imported products and how this is connected to the effective utilization of the former CETA quotas.  

The CETA, in the field of import-export, provides for the removal of tariff barriers and, therefore, the liberalization of markets with the exception of the dairy sector (as well as of alcoholic products), for which there is provided a system of quotas growing: the importation into Canada of European cheeses will be allowed duty-free with a progressive increase for six years up to 17,700 tons (16,000 for cheese and 1,700 for industrial cheeses) additional.

 

RULES, CUSTOMS PROCEDURES AND FOOD SAFETY

 

The second panel discussed customs and food safety issues in Canada. Dr. Mariarita Simona Sardella, manager of the Customs Office Legislation and Customs Procedures, focused her intervention on the explanation of which rules and procedures are provided for the protection and control of Italian products exported to Canada.  Dr. Claudio Gallottini of ITA Corporation, has analyzed the new law on food safety that will be adopted by Canada starting next January 2019.  The CSIC has already dealt with this topic with an analysis of Paolo Quattrocchi.

It emerges from the seminar how the dairy sector is registering more than positive performances, taking advantage of the provisions of the CETA agreement, in line with data on the entire Italian export to Canada. According to important sources such as Eurostat and Istat, Italy is the European country that has benefited most from the additional quantities of cheese imported from Canada. It has, in fact, increased the distance from France, Denmark and the Netherlands, respectively the second, third and fourth EU member cheese suppliers to Canada. Despite the excellent results achieved so far, further and ample margins for improvement are expected, through a quota management system able to ensure their full application during the quota year, making growth rates even more significant.

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