APEC leaders address protectionism, not climate change

Harper, Obama and other Pacific Rim leaders came to an agreement in Singapore that will help exporters


APEC leaders in Singapore came to an agreement on trade that rejects protectionism and should cut costs for exporters, during the two-day conference, attended by Prime Minister Stephen Harper and President Barack Obama. But the other goal of addressing climate change was nearly dead in the water. In fact, the leaders even acknowledged that they thought the upcoming Copenhagen climate change conference was also unlikely to yield any major action, as there is too much disagreement between the countries. But, according to Harper, the leaders agreed to try for a “broader political agreement” at that meeting in December.

Ottawa Citizen

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APEC leaders address protectionism, not climate change

    • Fewer tariffs = increased trade = increased wealth = more money for your beloved social programs.

      • Why don't you actually look at the Krugman link?

        • I did. What do you think I missed, exactly? I see chart for US, not the world, and I also see that US has tariffs. And tariffs negatively affect trade, which is why I think tariffs should be abolished.

          If you think what is happening now is good then lets hear why you think we, and others, should keep tariffs high.

          "As the poster boy for Buy American, steel industry executive Dan DiMicco is a leader in the campaign that is keeping Canadian companies from bidding on highly valuable urban renewal projects south of the border. But his North Carolina-based corporate giant continues to sell millions of dollars of structural steel in Canada every year with no problem." TorStar, Nov 13 '09

          • Just wondering if you'd looked. High tariffs don't seem to be an overwhelmingly immediate problem – RM's point. Obviously if they continue their downward trend we all benefit. I'd like to see whether all forms of protectionism are headed in the same direction.

      • "Fewer tariffs = increased trade = increased wealth = more money for your beloved social programs."

        That's a laymen formula, and factually untrue.

  1. Yes because clearly tariffs are the only way to have protectionism. There are in fact a number of kinds of non-tariff protection.

    I'm well aware of that and I'd be willing to bet if those other forms of protectionism were graphed we see the same results.

    • Well lets focus on the key issue – is trade increasing, but far slower than previously. Canadian exports grew 9.7%/annum from 1990-2000. Since then? Under 2% a year (we didn't pass the y2k peak till 2005). Moreover, Canada's increase in exports is almost entirely due to one industry. If you take out oil out of the equation that goes down to .002%/annum. Oh and I am not including the recession (data is from http://www.ic.gc.ca/sc_mrkti/tdst/tdo/tdo.php?lan

      A slowdown in world trade is a big problem – not just for incomes, but also for, yes, the environment. Trade allows us to use global resources more effectively because countries with a comparative advantage in the production of goods are doing the producing. Technological transfer is also going to be the critical factor in fighting global warming over the long run. Without free flow of ideas, goods and investment capital, we will take much longer to come up with technical solutions to global warming. Finally, the richer we are, the greater government tax revenues are, and the more can be spent on the environment.

  2. It would have been interesting to see how much further this issue would have been advanced – or not, if Dion's plan had actually been implemented. That's is: the first world taking the first steps, even if it meant some sacrifice, and thereby setting an example. We know it didn't happen because the liberal party failed to match it's rhetoric to its deeds. Why?
    It's instructive to remember that the liberal party is a brokerage party, as are the conservatives. Presumeably the Chretien faction won out in its argument that they couldn't afford to lose any more ground in Western Canada by reigniting memories of the NEP. A pity, and still inadequate as an excuse. Harper on the other hand has the west in his pocket. He does have political capital to spend, if he cared to…obviously he doesn't. The absence of real leadership, courageous leadership in this country is now our status quo.

  3. Tariffs are not what people are worried about. It's Obama's Buy American stimulus policy.

  4. "…an organization formed explicitly to foster Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation, not say, to save the environment…."
    Here's a quote for you to look up: "The economy is a wholly-owned subsidiary of the environment"

    …Stephen Harper walks into a bar. How come he didn't address global warming? Because he's a fool of a Conservative who listens to creationists and other delusional rightwingers.

    • Another great example of how Liberals preach tolerance unless you are a person of faith or believe in creationism! Then its okay to insult them and start personal attacks : ) Got to love it!

      • I am not a Liberal. I am a person of faith, but I consider fundamentalism is not as Christian as it pretends to be and indeed is a false religion of bigotry, greed and small-mindedness. Not unlike the current Conservative gang of thugs.

  5. "But the other goal of addressing climate change was nearly dead in the water."

    Thank god.

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