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Trudeau affirms China trade aspirations after USMCA's 'non market' requirement

07 October 2018

He threatened tariffs on cars and slapped them on steel. But the threats of retaliation against close allies brought results.

The new agreement would end the discriminatory pricing and restrict Canadian exports of dairy powders. Many said it could have been a lot worse.

Much work still needs to be done to finalize the new agreement, which is called USMCA (think of the song "YMCA") for each country's name and which replaces the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). In March, he began imposing taxes on steel and aluminum imports. The reason? The Guardian was quoted on Twitter as saying, "Trade talks stuck in neutral as Trump "very unhappy" with Canadian negotiator". "We have survived it". "We're pushing back on some things that we think might not be the right suggestions, which is what people would expect from Canada". "However, hours before a midnight deadline, CNN reported, ".the US and Canadian governments agreed to a deal that would allow USA farmers greater access to Canada's dairy market and address concerns about potential USA auto tariffs".

Besides, he added, "Canada would not negotiate a deal that would threaten its access to the US market". USA drug companies can fend off generic competition for a few more years. "We won't sign a bad deal for Canadians". "We limited the damage and preserved our access to the American market".

Another sticking point had been Canada's supply-managed dairy industry, which has been mostly protected from US products via production quotas and tariff program.

Some likeminded business groups agree that Trump's in-your-face style, a far more confrontational stance than his predecessors deployed, deserves credit.

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Unlike what it wanted for the new NAFTA, Washington's demands on China "still seem more opaque - mixed between market access, end to forced technology transfer, reduction in Chinese exports to US and cuts to overcapacity", said Rachel Ziemba, an emerging market analyst and adjunct fellow at think tank the Center for New American Security.

But it's not the final step in the lengthy path to congressional approval on an issue that has served for two decades as a political football for USA industrial policy and the loss of manufacturing jobs.

"The concessions were all from Canada and Mexico", MacKay said. "We continue to believe the trade fight with China has more risks than the market is anticipating".

Robert Bothwell, a professor at the University of Toronto, also said the USA just reduced their initial demands.

A deal seemed imminent, worrying those within the USTR who were convinced they weren't yet done, said the source.

Trump, as well as American farmers, have always been furious about this, despite the fact that Canada imports far more American milk than the U.S. imports Canadian milk; the United States has a trade surplus of about $400 million in dairy.

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The critics say the recent trade deals have produced few concrete gains and offer scant reason for optimism about the administration's riskiest gamble of all: The trade war it's ignited with China, the world's second-biggest economy after the United States. The same could be true of another provision, requiring at least 40 percent of a car's content to be built where workers earn $16 an hour.

Morneau says that's slightly higher than the 3.25 per cent that was agreed to under another deal - the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans Pacific Partnership - with 10 countries including Mexico, Japan and Australia.

That was a sentiment shared by AdMacro strategist Patrick Perrett-Green, who said Washington now "can focus all its ire on China".

The agreement also potentially restricts Canada and Mexico from reaching a free trade agreement with China and other "non-market" countries.

With a ministerial portfolio devoted to "trade diversification" and a government that touts the "rules-based global order" that the United States has thrown into scrutiny, don't expect Canada to hang up its hat just because it concluded a deal with President Donald Trump.

From deep within the pantheon of diplomacy that is the United Nations came hardly a warning shot - it was a rocket-propelled rhetorical grenade aimed directly at Canada, with a concussive blast that reverberated all the way to the Prime Minister's Office.

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Trudeau affirms China trade aspirations after USMCA's 'non market' requirement