National Newswatch

‘Difficult contract’ binds Canada to Saudi LAV deal, Trudeau says

Oct 23 2018 — Janyce McGregor — Previous Conservative government negotiated deal that prevents disclosure of conditions, PM says. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says it’s difficult to break Canada’s deal to supply light armoured vehicles to Saudi Arabia because of the way the contract was negotiated by the previous Conservative government. “The contract signed by the previous government, by Stephen Harper, makes […]

Canada to apply USMCA cultural exemption to digital trade

Oct 17 2018 — Janyce McGregor — The broad cultural exemption Canada fought to keep in the renegotiated North American free trade deal will allow for Canadian content rules in digital media. But government sources say the Trudeau government will not use that exemption in order to escape a section of the revised trade deal that extends copyright protections for artistic works […]

NAFTA talks forced Canada to pick a side in U.S.-China trade war

Oct 13 2018 — Janyce McGregor — When the Trudeau government agreed to a revised North American free trade deal, the Americans said Canada also agreed to something else: joining Donald Trump’s trade war on China. “The continent as a whole now stands united against what I’m going to call unfair trading practices,” Trump’s National Economic Council director Larry Kudlow said the […]

Auto industry relieved by NAFTA 2.0, but results may be mixed

Oct 4 2018 — Janyce McGregor — Sighs of relief rippled across the North American car industry on Monday. There would be no ‘Carmageddon’ caused by auto tariffs torpedoing cross-border trade, now that NAFTA 2.0 had found a safe landing zone. U.S. President Donald Trump had threatened to apply tariffs of up to 25 per cent on any vehicle or automotive part […]

Dairy industry fears ‘death by 1,000 cuts’ through new trade deal

Oct 2 2018 — Janyce McGregor — It’s been less than two weeks since dairy sector spokespeople from across Canada were asked how many of them believed the Trudeau government would defend their industry in trade talks. The prime minister had promised he would, right? Taking him at his word, all the farmers raised their hands. How quickly things change.

Buried behind the cows and cars: key changes in NAFTA 2.0

Oct 1 2018 — Janyce McGregor — While workers and consumers alike will be affected by the changes coming for Canada’s automotive and agriculture sectors, plenty of other things in the revised North American trade agreement will affect Canadians. Here’s a quick look at some of what’s new in the U.S.–Mexico–Canada Agreement (USMCA):

U.S.-Mexico text may preview Canada’s NAFTA prospects

Sep 28 2018 — Janyce McGregor — The U.S. trade representative is expected to post text online soon that will lay out more of what Mexico has agreed to so far in the renegotiation of the North American Free Trade Agreement. While Robert Lighthizer portrayed the preliminary agreement in principle announced in late August as exclusively bilateral, it may include at least […]

‘If’ NAFTA 2.0 proceeds, Trudeau wants to feel ‘confident’ on tariffs

Sep 26 2018 — Janyce McGregor — As the Trump administration continues to link the lifting of steel and aluminum tariffs to a successful conclusion of trade talks, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says Canadians need to feel confident about what will happen ‘if’ they move forward. Speaking at a press conference before leaving the United Nations General Assembly in New York to […]

Is Canada’s trade outreach to China driving a wedge into the NAFTA talks?

Sep 26 2018 — Janyce McGregor — Donald Trump’s trade representative said Tuesday that “a fair amount of distance” remains between the Canadian and U.S. sides in the NAFTA talks — but it was pretty obvious that it’s China, not Canada, dominating Robert Lighthizer’s thoughts lately. “There’s still a fair amount of distance between us,” the U.S. trade representative said at the […]

Missing another NAFTA deadline would be risky — but not fatal

Sep 23 2018 — Janyce McGregor — Washington’s warning to Canada to not miss the next deadline in the renegotiation of the North American Free Trade Agreement is starting to sound at this point like a boy crying wolf. Several deadlines have been blown already. The talks continue. The latest warning came Friday from White House economic adviser Kevin Hassett, who told […]

Canadian NAFTA negotiators ‘digging in’ as Freeland resumes talks in Washington

Sep 19 2018 — Janyce McGregor — Chrystia Freeland thanked Canadians for their support after her team of negotiators worked through the night in Washington D.C. leading up to the resumption of high-level trade negotiations with the Trump administration today. Canada’s foreign affairs minister was asked by journalists today about remarks by U.S. House Ways and Means committee chairman Kevin Brady, who […]

Canada’s NAFTA stance on culture is all about politics, not policy

Sep 14 2018 — Janyce McGregor — The exemption Canada negotiated for cultural industries in its first free trade agreement with the United States still haunts the renegotiation of NAFTA three decades later. But is this perennial “red line” for Canadian trade negotiators smart policy, or just smart politics? “It is inconceivable to Canadians that an American network might buy Canadian media […]