Canada has won a trade dispute case against New Zealand, which complained Ottawa was unfairly restricting access to the domestic market for dairy products, Trade Minister Mary Ng said on Tuesday.
New Zealand had asked the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership, a major trade pact, to set up a dispute panel to address Auckland’s complaint.
“Canada is very pleased with the outcome of the panel’s report which is a clear victory,” Ng said in a statement.
New Zealand, as well as the United States, has consistently complained that Canada is not meeting obligations under various trade deals to open its market to foreign producers.
In particular, they say that although Canada agreed to allow some dairy market access to foreign firms through a system of tariff-rate quotas, it was in fact improperly allocating some of them to domestic firms.
“The panel has made a significant finding by recognizing Canada’s sole discretion to set tariff-rate quota allocations policies,” said Ng.
She also reaffirmed Canada’s determination to protect the national supply management system that protects dairy farmers with production quotas and high tariffs on imports.