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Some premiers do not support reopening NAFTA

Yesterday, the Globe and Mail reported that, “The Canadian government is asking the provinces to join it in creating a new trade deal with the United States. …Prime Minister Stephen Harper said he wants to bring the awarding of local contracts – in both the United States and Canada – under the free-trade umbrella.”

The newspaper report added, “Any Canadian proposal to add a new chapter to NAFTA, however carries the risk that the United States will demand trade concessions in other areas.”

Today, the Globe and Mail reports that, “Kory Teneycke, a spokesman for Mr. Harper said …it’s too early to say whether any new agreement would mean reopening NAFTA, an idea that some premiers reportedly do not support.”

THE PREMIERS

“In a late-afternoon conference call yesterday …Canada’s premiers agreed to back Prime Minister Stephen Harper as he moves to exempt the country from Buy American policies …The provinces have not yet, however, agreed unanimously to commit to seeking (a deal that would open local procurement to outside bidders.).”

THE BUSINESS LOBBY

“Also yesterday, Mr. Harper was pressed by Canadian business to secure from Mr. Obama a waiver from Buy American provisions by offering up the possibility of the broader trade deal.”

“Jayson Myers, president of Canadian Manufacturers and Exporters …penned a letter to Mr. Harper applauding the idea of negotiating a trade deal for local-government procurement, but asked him to press Mr. Obama for a more immediate exemption.”

TRADE MINISTER AT THE FCM

“Later today, federal Trade Minister Stockwell Day is expected to warn a meeting of Canadian mayors to avoid retaliation against the United States by restricting domestic contracts to Canadian suppliers.”

The full article is at http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/national/premiers-rally-behind-harper-in-fight-against-buy-american/article1169850/

Yesterday’s campaign blog posting is at http://canadians.org/campaignblog/?p=643