National Newswatch

Canada rejects calls to end trade talks despite Brazil’s stand on Amazon

Aug 27 2019 — Janyce McGregor — International Trade Diversification Minister Jim Carr’s office says Canada will continue its trade negotiations with Mercosur, the South American trading bloc that includes Brazil, despite demands to call a halt to the talks until more action is taken to protect the Amazon rainforest. On Friday, NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh called on the Trudeau government to […]

Dairy imports off to a slow start in Pacific Rim trade deal

Jun 29 2019 — Janyce McGregor — As dairy, egg and poultry farmers wait for the Liberal government to explain the details of a $3.9 billion compensation package promised in this spring’s federal budget, a serious threat from imports under the Comprehensive and Progressive Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP) has yet to emerge. Tariff cuts began phasing in on Dec.30 in the Pacific Rim […]

Senate enables ‘extremely hasty bill’ to change trade rules

Jun 23 2019 — Janyce McGregor — On the day the Senate rushed through legislation to temporarily suspend one of Canada’s international trade obligations — citing fears of as-yet-unspecified “surges” — Donald Trump sat beside Justin Trudeau and said the current trade situation for North American steel is “very well taken care of.” C-101 cleared the House of Commons thanks to a […]

Bill Morneau’s hasty bill to protect the steel industry carries risks

Jun 7 2019 — Janyce McGregor — The broad political support greasing the wheels of C-101, Finance Minister Bill Morneau’s new legislation to change Canada’s trade safeguard rules, may obscure the calculated risk the Liberal government is taking with its strategy to protect the steel industry. Despite the long list of other bills awaiting passage before this Parliament dissolves — including last […]

NAFTA bill lets Trudeau cabinet wait and see what U.S. Congress does

May 28 2019 — Janyce McGregor — Strategic legislative drafting may allow the Trudeau government to pass an implementation bill for the revised North American trade agreement next month — while still leaving Canada the flexibility to respond if the U.S. Congress changes the deal. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau gave the government’s notice on Monday and the House of Commons passed a […]

Canada reveals final trade safeguards for heavy plate, stainless steel wire

May 10 2019 — Janyce McGregor — The Canadian Border Services Agency announced Friday the final ‘safeguard’ surtaxes meant to shield the domestic steel industry from competition from cheaper foreign imports of heavy plate and stainless steel wire. Canada’s steel producers had been hoping the federal government would protect its market for other kinds of steel as well. But the Canadian International […]

Morneau continues trade action on 2 foreign steel products, drops it for 5 others

Apr 27 2019 — Janyce McGregor — Only two kinds of foreign steel imports, heavy plate and stainless steel wire, will continue to face trade remedies to protect Canada’s steel industry, Finance Minister Bill Morneau announced Friday. His decision on final safeguards follows the advice of the Canadian International Trade Tribunal, which earlier this month found no justification to continue a surtax […]

The federal budget bill can’t actually ‘free the beer’

Apr 24 2019 — Janyce McGregor — Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said this year’s budget bill does what the Harper government could never do over ten years in office — it “frees the beer.” There’s just one problem with that claim: only the provinces can free the beer (or wine, or spirits). And most of them haven’t — including Premier Doug Ford’s […]

New NAFTA could add $62B to U.S. GDP, boost jobs, Congress told

Apr 18 2019 — Janyce McGregor — The case for ratifying the revised North American trade agreement got a boost Thursday with the release of a new analysis by the U.S. International Trade Commission that predicted economic gains for all three partners if its changes are implemented. “In light of the size of the U.S. economy relative to the size of the […]

Canada exempts $110M more of U.S. imports from retaliatory tariffs

Apr 18 2019 — Janyce McGregor — Earlier this week, the Finance Department quietly added $110 million worth of products and businesses to its list of exemptions from Canada’s retaliatory tariffs on U.S. imports. While this relief may protect jobs in Canada, it undermines political pressure the Trudeau government wants to keep on the Trump administration by making it less costly to […]

Canada ends surtax on 5 kinds of foreign steel

Apr 6 2019 — Janyce McGregor — Five types of foreign steel will no longer face a 25 per cent surtax in Canada after the Canadian International Trade Tribunal (CITT) filed a report that found inadequate evidence to justify most of the Finance Department’s emergency safeguards to protect Canadian steelmakers. Last October, Finance Minister Bill Morneau used a rare emergency safeguards measure […]

Liberals dust off Conservative playbook for a worried dairy sector

Mar 20 2019 — Janyce McGregor — Faced with an anxious dairy industry poised to complicate the next federal election for the Liberals — particularly in rural ridings in Quebec and Ontario — the federal Liberals are reviving the previous Conservative government’s compensation plan to ease the pain of recent trade agreements. Between trade agreements already in effect — with the European […]

Care to share that? Ottawa cuts steel deal with Mexico – but doesn’t tell trade tribunal

Feb 23 2019 — Janyce McGregor — The Department of Finance didn’t inform the Canadian International Trade Tribunal investigating the merits of its emergency safeguards on foreign steel when it quietly signed an agreement to allow more Mexican steel to enter Canada without paying the surtax. A memorandum of understanding (MOU) signed on Jan.16 set new quotas for energy tubular products (such […]