'Bilateral relationship'—not NAFTA—key term in trade talks

Conference Board of Canada suggests (rhetorically) cutting Mexico loose

Highlighting the bilateral relationship between Canada and the U.S., rather than the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), is the best way for Ottawa to keep trade channels open during the recession, according to a briefing sponsored by the Conference Board of Canada. Written by Marc Busch, The Perfect (Anti-Trade) Storm? Recession, the November U.S. Elections, and What It All Means for Canada argues that Americans equate NAFTA with Mexico and job losses, “but see trade with Canada as similar to trading with North Dakota.” In addition, to respond to the concerns of U.S. Congress, the briefing suggests emphasizing “that Canada will not become an entry point for goods that do not meet U.S. expectations.”

The Conference Board of Canada

Looking for more?

Get the Best of Maclean's sent straight to your inbox. Sign up for news, commentary and analysis.