Business & Policy
Sask goverment provides funding to increase ag markets
By Gov't of Saskatchewan
Dec. 5, 2012, Regina, SK - Saskatchewan Agriculture Minister Lyle Stewart announced nearly $84,000 in provincial funding to the Saskatchewan Trade and Export Partnership (STEP) to increase market access for Saskatchewan agriculture products. The funding is for the Agri-Value component of STEP's Incoming Buyers Program.
"There is tremendous demand for the agriculture products our farmers and ranchers produce and our government is committed to increasing market access to help them capture these opportunities," Stewart said. "This funding will help STEP cover the costs of bringing in potential buyers and trading partners to see first-hand the quality of our products, which will result in increased exports and benefits for our producers."
Through its Agri-Value Incoming Buyers Program, STEP brought in 40 international agri-food buyers to their biennial conference and arranged meetings with Saskatchewan businesses and exporters. Provincial funding will help cover travel costs such as hotels and flights.
This provincial funding is provided through the $1 million International Market Development Program (IMDP). The program is designed to help industry establish, maintain and expand international market presence; increase the number and value of incoming and outgoing trade missions; and open, protect and expand market access for Saskatchewan products.
STEP has a successful record of increasing trade between Saskatchewan and other markets by promoting the export of Saskatchewan goods, services and technologies. This past September, during their Export Week initiative, STEP organized meetings with international buyers from around the globe, of which 40 were from the agri-value sector and sponsored as part of IMDP.
"Saskatchewan's economy is dependent on its ability to compete in the global market," STEP CEO Lionel LaBelle said. "Being able to offer an Incoming Buyers Program to potential buyers allows STEP to increase the scope and success of our trade partnerships. Funding such as that received from the Ministry of Agriculture helped us hold 408 business to business meetings with agri-value buyers and exporters, which resulted in millions of dollars in agri-value exports from Saskatchewan."