Premiers expressed concern about the ongoing U.S. investigation on autos and auto part imports and emphasized the fact that they do not pose a national security threat to the United States. Tariffs could have major consequences on both sides of the border, given the high level of integration and interdependence of auto manufacturing in Canada and the United States.
Premiers are closely watching the U.S. investigation into uranium imports. Premiers will work with the federal government to ensure the investigation and any resulting trade actions do not impact Canadian uranium exports.
Premiers continue to be concerned about the recent unfounded tariffs placed on Canadian exports of uncoated groundwood paper (newsprint), and the ongoing dispute regarding softwood lumber. Premiers support the federal government’s actions to fully challenge unwarranted U.S. duties. Premiers also expressed concerns about threats to Canadian agricultural products.
Enhancing International Trade
Premiers recognize the need to expand trade and access new international markets is fundamental to Canada’s continued prosperity. Premiers strongly support efforts to enhance international trade and commerce through international trade agreements, noting the opportunities created by the recent signing of the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP) and the strengthened trade relationship with Europe created by the signing of the Canada – European Union Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA). Premiers will undertake coordinated efforts to maximize the benefits of these new trade relations for Canadians.
Premiers stressed the importance, now more than ever, of diversifying trade relationships. They urged the federal government to move forward with new trade agreements in key markets, particularly in the Asia-Pacific region, to ensure access for Canadian goods in growing international markets.
As the federal government moves forward with current and future trade negotiations, Premiers reaffirmed their expectation to be actively and meaningfully engaged to ensure that provincial / territorial interests are fully considered and represented. Premiers note this expectation includes the active involvement and participation of Provinces and Territories in the implementation of trade agreements and their direct representation on trade agreement committee structures, including those related to CETA.
Given these and other challenges Canada is facing, Premiers urged the Prime Minister to call a First Ministers’ Meeting on the economy before the end of the calendar year.
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