National Newswatch

Trump says Canada has treated U.S. farmers ‘very poorly,’ but most of them tell a different story

Sep 5 2018 — Tom Blackwell — As Canadian and American trade negotiators resumed their high-pressure talks in Washington Wednesday, one of Donald Trump’s favourite themes loomed large. For 17 months, the president has accused this country of giving U.S. farmers a raw deal, imposing 300-per-cent tariffs on their dairy products and committing other, unspecified injustices that would have to be remedied […]

Mexican negotiator suggests there is no need for Canada to rejoin NAFTA talks after U.S.-Mexico reach deal

Aug 23 2018 — Tom Blackwell — A top Mexican negotiator put a new question mark Wednesday over Canada’s participation in NAFTA talks, suggesting this country will not necessarily join in next week if the U.S. and its southern neighbour finish their own, two-way deal. And Jesus Seade seemed to indicate that any bilateral agreement with the U.S. could cover major trilateral […]

Trade talks with Canada proving ‘really, really difficult,’ with little progress: U.S. NAFTA negotiator

Aug 9 2018 — Tom Blackwell — Trade negotiations with Canada have been “really, really difficult,” achieving no substantial progress so far, says one of the United States’ top negotiators, offering a new glimpse at NAFTA-related tensions between the two countries. Gregg Doud, the chief U.S. agriculture negotiator, contrasted the Canadian stance with what he suggested was smooth sailing in talks with […]

Canada rejected in bid to be part of high-level NAFTA talks between Mexico and U.S.: sources

Jul 31 2018 — Tom Blackwell — American officials have taken the “highly unusual” step of rejecting Canada’s bid to take part in senior-level NAFTA talks between the U.S. and Mexico later this week, sources familiar with the trade negotiations said Monday. One person said attempts by Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland to get a seat at the table in Washington Thursday […]

Growing number of struggling U.S. dairy farmers look to supply management, as Trump urges Canada to kill it

Jul 25 2018 — Tom Blackwell — It’s a favourite grievance in President Donald Trump’s Twitter blasts at his northern neighbour: “Canada is charging massive Tariffs to our U.S. Farmers … Canada has treated our Agricultural business and Farmers very poorly.” The source of Trump’s ire is the supply-management system that controls milk production in Canada and limits imports from the U.S.; […]

NAFTA appears headed into bilateral talks, with U.S. looking to strike quick deal with Mexico: experts

Jul 20 2018 — Tom Blackwell — The on-again, off-again NAFTA talks appear headed in a whole new direction, one that could see the United States strike a quick deal with Mexico first, then turn to Canada with potentially added leverage, experts suggested Friday. The scenario might even result in the States sparing Mexico further punitive tariffs on steel or possibly cars, […]

U.S. still pushing for end to dairy supply management as part of NAFTA talks: diplomat

Jul 17 2018 — Tom Blackwell — Despite recent suggestions to the contrary, U.S officials negotiating a new NAFTA trade deal have demanded that Canada end its supply-management system for dairy and egg products, Ottawa’s deputy ambassador to the United States said Tuesday. And that request is a non-starter for Canada, Kirsten Hillman stressed to a conference here. The dairy sector has […]

Patrick Brown may be eyeing a return to politics after being urged to run for chair of Peel region

Jun 13 2018 — Tom Blackwell — Patrick Brown’s political resurrection may be starting in a suburban metropolis west of Toronto. The former Ontario Progressive Conservative leader, whose sudden resignation and its fallout shook Ontario politics for months this year, says he is being urged to run for chair of Peel region, which encompasses three cities with a population of 1.3 million. […]

“They don¹t want us to win”: Ford accuses media, pollsters of conspiring against Ontario PC victory in email blasts

Jun 5 2018 — Tom Blackwell — In his daily encounters with journalists during Ontario’s election campaign, Doug Ford seems eager to avoid confrontation — a contrast to the angry outbursts he directed at the press when late brother Rob was mayor of Toronto. But in a series of recent email blasts to party members, there’s been a different message, one that […]