Minister MacAulay concludes successful trip to Vietnam, Japan and South Korea to open doors for the Canadian agriculture and agri-food sector

News release

November 6, 2023 – Ottawa – Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada  

Canada is growing what the world wants and the Government of Canada is committed to supporting our hardworking Canadian producers by expanding trade and investment opportunities around the globe. 

To further this effort, the Honourable Lawrence MacAulay, Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food, travelled to Vietnam, Japan and South Korea to meet with key industry groups, facilitate new business opportunities and connections, promote Canada's high-quality agri-food products, and engage with local government representatives.

In Hanoi, Minister MacAulay met with industry leaders, key importers of Canadian products, and with the Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Le Minh Hoan. As a fellow member of the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP), Vietnam is an important partner – and a fast-growing market for Canadian products. The two leaders marked the 50th anniversary of Canada-Vietnam bilateral relations, explored new business opportunities, and had positive discussions on market access for Canadian products, including wheat, pork, blueberries, and potatoes. 

While in Tokyo, Minister MacAulay joined the Trade Mission led by the Honourable Mary Ng, Minister of Export Promotion, International Trade and Economic Development, and met with key business partners in the region. The Minister also met with State Minister Norikazu Suzuki where he reiterated Canada's role as a reliable supplier of agricultural products and underscored Canada's commitment to secure an African swine fever zoning arrangement. 

In Seoul, Minister MacAulay announced more than $23 million in funding for agricultural industry stakeholders under the AgriMarketing Program. This investment will increase and diversify Canada's exports and help Canadian producers and exporters build stronger ties with customers around the world. The Minister also met with representatives from and Homeplus, two of South Korea's top retailers, to further promote Canada as the supplier of choice for high-quality, innovative and sustainable food products. 

Canada exports nearly half of its agriculture production and the Indo-Pacific region presents tremendous economic opportunities for the sector. Expanding our partnerships and trade relationships in the region is a top priority for the Government of Canada, and Team Canada Trade Missions are a key initiative under the Indo-Pacific Strategy. 

Canada is further bolstering our presence with a commitment to open the first-ever Indo-Pacific Agriculture and Agri-Food Office (IPAAO) in Manila, Philippines. Backed by $31.8 million in dedicated funding, this new office will help Canada engage with stakeholders, regulatory counterparts, and policy decision-makers. By deepening our existing relationships with likeminded partners, we can jointly expand our interests in the region.

Throughout his trip, Minister MacAulay spoke of Canada's goal to build on our strong and sustainable business ties in the Indo-Pacific region and promote the products Canada has to offer. He also met with local media in Vietnam and South Korea to promote the Canada Brand and exceptional quality of Canadian products. With more than 160 organizations joining this mission,17 of them from the agricultural sector, the Government of Canada has taken another step forward in making that goal a reality.


"Canada is a global leader in agriculture and agri-food, and our products are the best in the world. It has been an honour to represent Canadian farmers in Vietnam, Japan, and South Korea, and to showcase that quality in person. When I first became Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food in 2015, our agricultural exports were $56 billion. As I return to the portfolio, we've increased that number to over $92 billion. My goal is to continue to grow our exports, and that starts with opening markets and creating opportunities for our hardworking Canadian farmers." 

- The Honourable Lawrence MacAulay, Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food

Quick facts

  • In 2022, Canada's agriculture and agri-food exports to the Indo-Pacific region totalled $21.8 billion. During the 2018-2022 period, our agriculture and agri-food exports to the region expanded by nearly 7%, while our imports from the region have grown by nearly 9%.

  • The Indo-Pacific is likely to make up two-thirds of the middle class by 2030, and over half of global GDP by 2040.

  • Vietnam became Canada's 19th largest agriculture and agri-food market globally and 9th largest in the Indo-Pacific region in 2022.

  • In 2022, Canada agriculture and food exports to Japan reached $5.4 billion. That year, Canada was Japan's sixth largest supplier of agriculture and food products.

  • South Korea is an important market for Canada's agriculture and food sector. It is home to Canada's first bilateral free trade agreement in the Indo-Pacific.

  • The Canada Brand provides Canadian exporters with a stronger international presence by helping them leverage Canada's positive reputation around the world. Export-ready companies can sign-up for free.

  • Unveiled in November 2022, the main priorities outlined in Canada's Indo-Pacific Strategy include expanding trade, investment and supply chain resilience by strengthening and diversifying Canada's economic partnerships.

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For media:

Francis Chechile
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food

Media Relations
Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada
Ottawa, Ontario
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