Trudeau Is Failing Us on the International Stage

February 7, 2019

While touring our constituency over the Winter Break, an issue that constituents repeatedly shared was how they were paying for Justin Trudeau’s mistakes.

Our trading relationship with the United States is the worst it has been in decades. Last year, the American government imposed a 25 percent duty on imported Canadian steel and a 10 per cent duty on imported Canadian aluminum. Trudeau told workers in these industries he would resolve the issue with the United States. He failed to do so.

Trudeau was then was forced to take concession after concession from Donald Trump during the Canada-United States-Mexico Agreement negotiations. After promising Canadians he would renegotiate better terms for Canada than under NAFTA, Trudeau capitulated to Donald Trump on auto manufacturing, prescription drugs, Buy American provisions, steel and aluminum tariffs and future trade deals with other countries.

Trudeau’s failure to get a better deal on NAFTA means higher drug prices for Canadians and less control over our industry and future trade deals. He backed down to Donald Trump on NAFTA, and is now backing down to China. His weakness and confusion on the international stage has put Canadian market access around the globe at risk.

Trudeau should have listened to Andrew Scheer from the beginning and fired John McCallum as our Ambassador to China immediately following McCallum’s interference into the extradition case of a Huawei executive Meng Wanzhou. Meng is facing charges that include bank fraud, conspiracy to commit wire fraud, and violating the International Emergency Economic Powers Act in the United States. Trudeau seems willing to call every world leader except the President of China who could actually release two detained Canadians being held there.

Grain and oilseed producers are rightfully concerned that Trudeau’s mismanagement of the Canada-China relationship has put their livelihoods at risk. Canada exported $21.8 billion dollars in goods to China last year, over half of which was agricultural goods and natural resources. In the 2017-18 crop year, China purchased 40 per cent of 10.7 million tonnes of canola seed Canada exported. Canadian farmers have a lot to lose if the government continues to bungle this file.

It is clear that the Prime Minister's foreign policy is a disaster, and Canadians are paying for his mistakes. Our international partners have no respect for Justin Trudeau. And why should they? After clowning around in India and inviting a convicted terrorist along with him, he then was forced to take concession after concession from Donald Trump. He even angered our trading partners in Japan and Australia by not showing up to CPTPP negotiations at the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation summit in Vietnam. And now we have the debacle with China.

Trudeau has made a fiasco of our relationships with global trading partners over the past three years. Canadians don’t like what they’ve seen; and they’re tired of paying for his mistakes.

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