The US’s latest NAFTA demands are exactly those you’d expect a large, powerful partner to make of its weaker counterpart: they demand everything and offer nothing. As per this article in the Globe and Mail, the talking points include (but of course, aren’t limited to):
- Full access for all agricultural products
- The right to bid on all government contracts
- Unfettered access for all digital goods
- The ability to slap tariffs on anything they believe isn’t ‘American’ enough
All the while the US implicitly and explicitly deters Canadian companies from participating in its own market via onerous “Buy American” provisions, massive farm subsidies, tariffs (even those struck down repeatedly by the WTO) etc.
This adds weight to my contention that if Canada is to hold its own, it needs to dramatically increase its immigration quotas from a paltry 1% a year, and build a population base that can both sustain a large, vibrant internal market as well as provide a buffer against a “me at all costs” partner.