Canada’s Justin Trudeau Monday hailed a new continental trade pact with the United States and Mexico as “profoundly beneficial” for Canadians – but the prime minister must now sell the deal to skeptical dairy farmers, unions and voters.
Trump, as well as American farmers, have always been furious about this, despite the fact that Canada imports far more American milk than the USA imports Canadian milk; the U.S. has a trade surplus of about $400 million in dairy.
President Donald Trump on Monday slammed critics of his restrictive trade policy during a press conference discussing the new trade agreement reached by the US, Canada, and Mexico.
Of course, the Twitterverse was buzzing with mixed reactions including confusion and humour after the new name was unveiled.
A spokesman for Jim Carr, Canada’s new minister for global trade diversification, said nothing that Canada agreed to in the USMCA would hamper the ability to pursue trade a trade agreement with China.
With files from Kenneth Chan.
I don’t think any country would like someone to be in their critical trade negotiations that was not tough.
Trump’s approach at best means America is jogging in place against all of the very real challenges our country needs to address, from income equality to the opioid crisis – and at worst, means our credibility as a nation is shattered.
Trump also took aim at China, the president’s main adversary on trade.
“Most of effects … have already been absorbed in Southeast Asia”, he said.
While that provision was an irritant for Lighthizer from the outset of negotiations, Freeland said her USA counterpart “has come to appreciate its value for Canada and the value it brought to the larger trading relationship”. It offers Canada protection if Trump goes ahead with plans to impose tariffs on cars, trucks and auto parts imported into the United States.
Speaking at a political rally in Wheeling, West Virginia on Saturday night, Trump told supporters: “We’ll see what happens with Canada, if they come along”.
“By increasing the term to 10 years, there will be less competition and higher prices”, said Valeria Moy, an economics professor and the director of Mexico Como Vamos, a think tank in Mexico City.
Despite the Canadian concessions, Professor Louis Belanger of the University of Laval in Quebec told AFP the alternative – no deal at all – would have been a much darker outcome.
“We are sending China a message, and I hope they are listening”, he said.
“He’s a good man, he’s done a good job and he loves the people of Canada”, Trump said. “We understand how important it is to engage, to exchange, to grow our economies to the benefit both of ourselves and the countries we partner with”.
“In the long term, as long as the supply chains are shifting towards North America, it will be harder for countries elsewhere to break into the North American market”, said Henry Gao, a professor of trade policy at Singapore Management University.
WATCH above to hear Toronto Sun columnist Lorrie Goldstein break down the new NAFTA reboot with our host Mark Daniell and if Canada comes out a victor or loser out of this deal.
Yesterday (30 September), the National Association of Manufacturers’ president and CEO Jay Timmons released a statement applauding the new USMCA, adding it creates more opportunities for USA manufacturing workers, especially as the trade relationship with China has recently turned sour. “That would have been devastating for Canada, and so we just had to say no”.
For Trump, the agreement offered vindication for his hardline trade policies that have roiled relations with China, the European Union and America’s North American neighbors while causing concerns among Midwest farmers and manufacturers anxious about retaliation.