The New Free Trade Agreement
On January 29, 2020, the Liberals officially tabled the Canada-United States-Mexico Trade Agreement signaling the continuation of free trade between our three countries. As I made clear in debate in the House of Commons this is an important deal for Canada’s economy, and although we are disappointed with the many concessions made, the deal is vital to our country, our province, and Battle River-Crowfoot. This column will outline some of these concerns and what steps the Official Opposition will take to scrutinize the bill.
The United States is our largest trading partner and it is essential to our respective economies that our diplomatic relations continue to be strong for years to come. It is in Canada’s best interest to ensure our products such as canola, precious metals, oil, and other commodities are available to markets like the United States and Mexico for our economic well-being.
Free trade has increased living standards in all three nations by enabling businesses to trade back and forth with limited barriers. In 2017, the total of each other’s country’s imports from one another totaled US$1.1 trillion. Total trade between the United States and Canada has doubled since 1993 and has grown nine-fold between Canada and Mexico. This growth provides economic stability in a sustainable, yet responsible, manner.
The promotion of free trade between countries in order to bring prosperity to Canadians is a legacy that Canada’s Conservatives hold strong. Strong trade relations and sound economic solutions are fundamental principles in the Conservative movement.
While the Conservative Party of Canada supports the free trade and the benefits it can bring; we believe in a methodical, studied approach to make the right decisions for Canadians. It is the obligation of Conservative MPs to stand up for the interests of their constituents and ensure that Canada’s reputation of stability and reliability is well-represented on the world stage.
The Prime Minister and the Liberal Government have yet again broadcasted their tone-deaf, nonchalant mentality when it comes to working with other parties. During negotiations and the ratification process, they continually ignored requests from the Conservatives, along with leaders from other parties, about economic impact assessments relating to CUSMA.
In 2019, voters let the Liberal Government know that their reckless attitude towards governance was not acceptable by taking away over one million votes. The Liberals need to realize that they have a minority mandate and a cooperative effort is needed to pass legislation.
Canadians can rely on Canada’s Conservatives to ensure that free trade is carried out in a responsible manner with the interests of Canadians in mind.