The Business Council of Canada today welcomed the introduction of legislation to implement Canada’s ambitious new trade agreement with Pacific Rim nations, calling on parliamentarians to act swiftly to bring the agreement into force.

The Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership will give Canadian companies of all sizes enhanced access to some of the world’s largest and fastest-growing markets.

“The CPTPP has long been a priority for Canadian business, but it’s now even more important given the uncertainty that surrounds NAFTA negotiations and the imposition of tariffs on Canadian steel and aluminum,” said The Honourable John Manley, President and Chief Executive Officer of the Business Council.

“In the face of protectionism, Canada must aggressively pursue trade liberalization and diversification with like-minded partners. Implementing the CPTPP will send a strong message that Canada is committed to multilateral cooperation and trade agreements based on transparent, enforceable rules. It will create well-paying jobs, spur investment and forge new partnerships across the Pacific, ensuring a higher standard of living for all citizens.”

In January, representatives of Canada, Japan, Australia, New Zealand, Mexico, Singapore, Vietnam, Malaysia, Brunei, Chile and Peru signed the CPTPP and pledged to ratify it as quickly as possible. As soon as any six of the 11 countries have formally approved it, the agreement goes into effect. So far, only Mexico has endorsed the agreement, but Japan, Australia, Chile, New Zealand and Vietnam are likely to follow suit shortly.

“The sooner our government implements the CPTPP, the faster Canadian companies and workers will benefit from new access to important international markets,” Mr. Manley said.

Together, the 11 countries that comprise the CPTPP are home to 495 million people and represent 13.5 per cent of the global economy.

About the Business Council of Canada

The Business Council is a non-profit, non-partisan organization composed of the chief executives of Canada’s leading enterprises, representing every region and sector of the economy. The Council’s 150 member companies employ 1.5 million Canadians, account for more than half the value of the Toronto Stock Exchange, contribute the largest share of federal corporate taxes, and are responsible for most of Canada’s exports, corporate philanthropy, and private-sector investments in research and development.