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Conference Board report says ‘avoid mentioning NAFTA’

The National Post reports this afternoon that, “With protectionist sentiment running at an elevated pitch in the United States, Canada needs to stress its existing bilateral relationship, rather than NAFTA, in order to promote its interests with its largest trading partner, the Conference Board of Canada said Monday.”

Marc Busch, author of ‘The Perfect (Anti-Trade) Storm? Recession, the November U.S. Elections, and What It All Means for Canada’, sponsored by the Conference Board’s International Trade and Investment Centre, says, “Ottawa needs a new approach to discussing Canada–U.S. trade — one that avoids direct mention of NAFTA. NAFTA is associated with the job losses to Mexico, with its lower wage rates. In contrast, Americans see trade with Canada as similar to trading with North Dakota. By emphasizing the bilateral trade relationship instead of NAFTA itself, Canada can benefit from the fact that Americans do not perceive Canadian trade as a threat.”

The news report can be read at http://www.calgaryherald.com/news/Canada+must+stress+trade+relationship+with+NAFTA+report/1584921/story.html.

The 12 page report can be downloaded –after a 5-minute ‘create an account’ process with the Conference Board of Canada – at http://www.conferenceboard.ca/.