National Newswatch

NAFTA 2.0 – From the Halls of Montezuma

Sep 4 2017 — Peter Clark — This week’s round of NAFTA renegotiation talks is occurring in Mexico City’s Grand Hyatt close by the Chapultepec Park, the site of the Famous Battle of the U.S. Marine hymn – the Halls of Montezuma. Notwithstanding the rumours, the battles inside the Hyatt have not reached military scale – or even fisticuffs. Any real news […]

Not what the Donald ordered

Aug 17 2017 — Peter Clark — I’m off to Washington for round one of the NAFTA 2.0 negotiations. There may be some minimal harvesting of low-hanging fruit this week. President Trump wants more, of course. He needs something to distract from the daily disintegration of his administration. NAFTA must be demolished and rebuilt to his design — or perhaps just scrapped […]

NAFTA 2.0 – Déjà Vu All Over Again

Aug 15 2017 — Peter Clark — Hundreds of trade negotiators have descended on Washington this week to ‘modernize’ NAFTA – whether it needs it or not. Tens of millions of jobs in Canada, Mexico and the U.S. depend directly on trade within North America. More than US$1 trillion in annual trade in goods and services is being held for ransom to satisfy irresponsible xenophobic election promises and the beggar thy neighbour initiatives of President Donald J. Trump.

NAFTA 2.0 – Canada’s Wish List

Aug 15 2017 — Peter Clark — Canada has jumped into the NAFTA re-negotiation fray with high ambition and a heavy dose of social conscience. Global Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland has finally revealed Canada’s priorities in the negotiations. Canada will not simply accept the U.S. effort to transform the Trans-Pacific Partnership and bits and pieces of the Canada – E.U. Comprehensive Economic […]

NAFTA 2.0 – Canada’s Wish List

Aug 15 2017 — Peter Clark — Canada has jumped into the NAFTA re-negotiation fray with high ambition and a heavy dose of social conscience. Global Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland has finally revealed Canada’s priorities in the negotiations. Canada will not simply accept the U.S. effort to transform the Trans-Pacific Partnership and bits and pieces of the Canada – E.U. Comprehensive Economic […]

Mutually Assured Trade Devastation

Mar 2 2017 — Peter Clark — Yesterday, President Trump tabled his 2017 Trade Agenda.  If it is put into effect, Canada may find it more difficult to exercise our WTO rights. The United States’ determination to change its tax system — in ways which could seriously impact Canada — makes the WTO challenge system more important than ever. I am frequently […]

Softwood Lumber – The Other Shoe Drops

Nov 25 2016 — Peter Clark — International Trade Minister Chrystia Freeland’s office has confirmed that the U.S. Lumber Coalition will file petitions in the fifth round of anti-dumping/countervailing duty today (November 25). Lumber V is moving from threat to reality. The Coalition was pleased to see the end of the 2006 SLA. It did not work well for them. Cross border lumber […]

Trumpian Trade Policy – Welcome to the Twilight Zone

Nov 17 2016 — Peter Clark — President-elect Donald Trump has become a master of the pirouette since his election was confirmed in the early hours of November 9. He has softened his position on many of his promises, but considerable uncertainty continues to surround his positions on trade. It seems clear from the first week post-election that while President-elect Trump fought the election […]

Steve Chase

Donald the destroyer

May 26 2016 — Peter Clark — Trade Minister Chrystia Freeland worries about a growing global wave of protectionism. She should worry. If Donald Trump is elected president in November, he could deliver on his trade threats. NAFTA could be terminated. Congress could not stop him. The Donald has said he likes Canada and Canadians. Hopefully, he does not “like” us in […]

Steve Chase

No matter how you slice it, we’re headed toward a lumber fight

May 15 2016 — Peter Clark — By mid-October, the U.S. Lumber Coalition — a.k.a. The Coalition to those who have spent their lives in the trenches of softwood lumber battles — will be able to file new anti-dumping and countervailing duty complaints against Canadian softwood lumber exports. Unless a replacement for the 2006 Softwood Lumber Agreement can be negotiated in the […]

Full text of the Trans-Pacific Partnership Released

Nov 5 2015 — Peter Clark — The text of the Trans-Pacific Partnership agreement is now available. As predicted it is massive and includes numerous side letters . The side letters released are only those between the USA and the other 11 partner countries. We will not see what Canada has done with the other 10 until Canada posts the text and […]

Understanding Canada’s Trade Agenda

Oct 23 2015 — Peter Clark — There will be no lack of challenges for Prime Minister-designate Justin Trudeau and his newly elected team in shaping Canada’s trade agenda. The Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) has the highest profile.  Though it requires urgent attention, there are other important issues in play. The Liberal government will have willing and capable helpers in the trade bureaucracy.  Having […]