Canada-China Free Trade Talks

The Game Plan

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau recently visited Beijing in an effort to forge a partnership with China. The fair trade talks were under way after his arrival on the 4th of December, and the prime minister hoped to attract Chinese investors and have economic relations move forward.

Senior government officials stated that the goal of Canada was to create a framework for free trade talks that include its progressive trade agenda, as it had with other Pacific Rim countries and Europe. However, China has maintained its stance that any deal must be void of human rights considerations.

International Trade Minister François-Philippe Champagne said in a recent speech that Canada seeks a broad framework “where issues can be addressed and rule of law is paramount.” This includes leveling the playing field and remaining firm in its progressive trade agenda. “When it comes to trade,” said Champagne, “Canadians expect us to be resolute and steadfast in the promotion of our values abroad, in preserving and protecting our national security, and all the while growing our country. We must see the entire chessboard and plan our moves accordingly.”

An Uphill Battle

Securing free trade talks is no easy feat where China is concerned. President Xi Jinping has sworn to project a worldview which he describes as “socialism with Chinese characteristics.”

Paul Evans of the Institute of Asian Research at the University of British Columbia stated that China has been very vocal in its stance and insistence that they have no intention of creating a future that is built on democracy and western human rights.

David Mulroney, former Canadian ambassador to China, stated, “Xi is less interested in market forces than his predecessors, much more inclined to state intervention and much more inclined to do things that really cause the playing field to be skewed in China’s favour.

 

 

Trudeau Returns

The prime minister departed China without a commitment toward free trade talks. While many Canadians are concerned that he was not able to secure a deal or even begin talks, he suggested that expectations were too high. “Canadians should be under no illusions that a free trade deal with China will be easy,” he said.

However, he also stated that it was not an impossible task. “Trade has been an essential element in their success in lifting hundreds of millions of people out of poverty and into the global middle class.” He also stated that discussions would reflect on challenges, opportunities, advantages, and disadvantages of two vastly different systems attempting to collaborate.

The trip resulted in mixed feelings around the board. Evans viewed the visit as “successful in the minimalist sense” due to the two sides committing to annual leaders’ meeting. Others, however, saw the visit as an utter failure and remarked on Trudeau’s inability to accomplish anything.

Wendy Dobson of the Rotman School of Management at the University of Toronto stated, “The visit seemed strangely unprepared.” She also referred to the trip as “a missed opportunity to deepen the relationship and diversity our markets.”

Canada-China Energy and Environment Forum director Wenran Jiang said the delay Only serves to “further convince the Chinese side that Canada can’t get anything done.”


 

Sources:

https://www.canadianmanufacturing.com/exporting-and-importing/trudeau-playing-long-game-talks-begin-china-205175/

https://www.canadianmanufacturing.com/exporting-and-importing/canada-china-free-trade-talks-still-shelf-trudeau-returns-empty-handed-205402/

Did you miss this?

Other Popular Stories

  • For some car makers March was best ever
  • Ontario increases incentives for EV buyers
  • Wind energy group says PC bill is misguided
  • Canada keeping up pressure on US for Keystone XL approval
  • Researchers claim potential improvement in solar cell efficiency
  • Héroux-Devtek subsidiary to provide landing gear for Boeing 777
  • Canada's oil and gas industry gathering in Toronto for two-day forum
  • Ontario and Saskatchewan criticizes the Federal Canadian Minerals and Metals Plan in a joint official statement
  • Another successful test: Crew Dragon flawlessly docks with Internataional Space Station
  • Renault's autonomous float hover car by Yunchen Chai may be the automobile of the future — winner of a design competition from Renault
  • Contractors, steel workers unions support Northern Gateway pipeline
  • Thunder Child, the unsinkable boat? Self-righting, wavepiercing interceptor engineered to be the perfect boat for offshore patrol
  • Oil leads Canada's GDP growth while OPEC production cuts have prices surging
  • Ontario Local Food Bill hailed by farm/food groups
  • Davie shipyard delivers "most complex" vessel ever built in NA
  • Toronto an ideal location for Amazon HQ 2: If Amazon needs to hire tech employees, GTA and Canada has the edge
  • First vehicle powered by sodium-ion battery shown in UK
  • Israeli aluminum-air electric car battery to be tested in Montreal
  • Scientists Develop Sustainable Battery Using Tree Bark Tannins
  • Infrastructure in focus at Queen's Park as new legislation tabled
Scroll to Top