Canada hasn’t ratified the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) yet as lawmakers continue to review NAFTA’s successor. The deal still appears on track for approval despite a torrent of hearings and saber-rattling over some unpopular provisions, including allowances for a little more U.S. dairy to flow into Canada.
USMCA has support from political parties accounting for an overwhelming majority of lawmakers in Canada’s House of Commons. But those parties include opponents of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s Liberal Party, who are also keen to score some political points and drag out the process.
It shouldn’t be too much longer, though. The New Democratic Party — an opposition party left of the Liberals, recently agreed to help speed up the process. The NDP also helped defeat an effort by Conservatives, who support USMCA, to push hearings on the agreement into March.
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“To get two juggernauts to share tracks and break bread together and to route through the States while negotiating the protests. It’s badass.”
— Corey Darbyson, director of intermodal carrier Transport DSquare, on the reported deal brokered by the Canadian government for Canadian National to use rival Canadian Pacific’s tracks to bypass protest blockades.
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The Canadian Trucking Alliance, representing carriers across Canada, impressed upon lawmakers in Ottawa the need to get USMCA ratified.
Lak Shoan, the CTA’s policy director, told members of a trade committee that ratification “is of critical importance to our sector,” noting that trucks move nearly 70% of trade between Canada and the U.S.
Hammer down, everyone!