TOKYO, Japan – Wrapping up three days of meetings with Japanese government and business leaders, The Honourable John Manley today urged Canada to pursue a swift and successful conclusion to talks on the proposed Comprehensive and Progressive Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP).

“Delaying these negotiations any further puts at risk a strategic partnership that would be immensely beneficial to Canada and Canadian exporters,” said Mr. Manley, President and Chief Executive Officer of the Business Council of Canada.

“Now more than ever, Canada should be doing everything possible to diversify its trade. The CPTPP would be a game-changer for Canadian companies in key markets in the Americas and across the Pacific.”

The CPTPP would make it easier for Canadians to do business in 10 countries around the Pacific Rim. It would give Canada a significant first-mover advantage over competitors in fast-growing markets such as Vietnam and Malaysia. Equally important, it would give Canadian exporters preferential access to Japan, our country’s second-largest trading partner in Asia.

Linda Hasenfratz, Chief Executive Officer of Linamar Corporation and Chair of the Business Council of Canada, echoed Mr. Manley’s comments.

“I wholly support the CPTPP,” she said. “Bigger markets to buy from and sell to mean more opportunities for Canadian companies to grow and become more efficient. The more countries we can establish free trade agreements with, the more attractive Canada becomes as a place to invest and run a globally focused business.”

Based in Guelph, Ontario, Linamar is Canada’s second-largest automotive parts manufacturer. It is a leading supplier of powertrain system solutions to the light vehicle, commercial truck, off-highway, energy and industrial OEM markets. The company’s Skyjack brand is a global leader in aerial work platforms for the construction and access markets.

The Business Council of Canada is the voice of Canada’s business leaders. Founded in 1976, it is a non-profit, non-partisan association composed of the chief executives and entrepreneurs of 150 leading Canadian companies, in every region of the country and every industry sector.

As the two largest economies in the CPTPP, Canada and Japan share a duty to promote open markets and a rules-based trading framework, Mr. Manley said.

“At a time when protectionism and inward-looking policies are proliferating, concluding the CPTPP would send a strong signal to the world about the benefits of multilateral economic cooperation.”

In addition, “The CPTPP represents a major opportunity for Canada to gain new access to the large Japanese market,” he said. “Concluding the agreement will encourage trade diversification and generate stronger employment and economic growth in Canada.”