Alberta Politics: China’s concerns about Canadian canola are legitimate, and we’re going to have to deal with them sooner or later

PHOTOS: A field of canola at its most colourful, photographed in early August near Morinville, Alberta. Below: Farmer Ken Larsen, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, International Trade Minister Chrystia Freeland and Harper-era agriculture minister Gerry Ritz. According to the Globe and Mail, or at least one of the five apparently like-minded individuals interviewed recently by the ...

The Progressive Economics Forum: The Stylized Facts of Canada-China Trade

Prime Minister Trudeau leads a big entourage to China this week, in hopes of expanding Canada’s foothold in that huge economy.  A couple of interesting media stories today set the stage for the visit: an overview of China’s evolving diplomatic and economic strategies by Andy Blatchford of Canadian Press, and a review of China’s growing ...

The Progressive Economics Forum: The TPP is a Bad Idea, part 27

On June 16th the House Committee on International Trade held its 27th meeting about the Trans-Pacific Partnership. The Canadian Labour Congress, the Canadian Association of Research Libraries, Scott Sinclair, and Gus Van Harten were all in Ottawa to tell parliamentarians just how bad the Trans-Pacific Partnership would be for Canada. We outlined the limitations on ...

The Progressive Economics Forum: “Signing Trade Deals” is NOT Synonymous with “Promoting Trade”

The fine folks at the Institute for Research on Public Policy have undertaken an important and eclectic review of Canadian trade policy. They have marshaled 30 contributions from researchers addressing all aspects of Canada’s recent trade performance, and how we can improve it. The contributions will eventually be published in a single volume, Redesigning Canadian ...

Alberta Politics: Short-term jobs and profits notwithstanding, Canada’s interests are not served by Saudi armoured vehicle sale

PHOTOS: A Canadian LAV III similar to the armoured vehicles to be sold by General Dynamics Land Systems (Canada) of London, Ont., to the Saudi National Guard. Below: Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, Foreign Minister Stéphane Dion, former MI6 head Sir Richard Dearlove and former Saudi intelligence chief Prince Bandar bin Sultan. It’s one thing to ...

The Progressive Economics Forum: Canada Once Again Adding Value to Its Exports

In the course of researching a forthcoming commentary on Canada’s trade policy for the good folks over at the IRPP, I stumbled upon a surprising and encouraging bit of data.  I grouped Statistics Canada’s series on exports and imports by broad commodity grouping (CANSIM Table 228-8059) into three categories: 4 primary sectors (including agriculture, energy, ...

The Progressive Economics Forum: Some missing elements from the Canadian TPP debate

With an agreement reached on the Trans Pacific Partnership, the 12-member trade and investment treaty, opinions began swirling about what the deal means for the future of Canada. Plenty of facts have been bandied about in an effort to clarify the TPP’s significance: 12 Pacific Rim countries, 800 million people, 36 percent of global GDP ...

Alberta Politics: Rachel Notley to Alberta’s trade ‘envoy’ to Washington: Nice seeing you ’round! Here’s your hat!

PHOTOS: Departing Alberta trade ‘envoy’ to Washington, D.C., Rob Merrifield, back in the day when he was a federal cabinet minister. Below: Former Alberta premier Jim Prentice, who hired Mr. Merrifield a year ago, and Premier Rachel Notley, who let him go at the end of last week. It was an easy mistake to make: ...

The Progressive Economics Forum: ROCHON: Harper in closet over the economy as Canada heads toward another recession

This guest blog post has been written by Louis-Philippe Rochon. You can follow him on Twitter @Lprochon – Harper’s recent incarnation as an anti-terrorist crusader has caught many Canadians by surprise. Harper is spending considerable political energy beating the drums of war against terrorists, and introducing a far-reaching, and much condemned, bill aimed at restricting ...

The Progressive Economics Forum: Important Challenges to Investor-State Dispute-Settlement

In my many years documenting and critiquing the overblown claims of free trade proponents about the supposedly self-regulating efficiency-promoting mutually-benefiting effects of globalization, I’ve encountered some real doozies.  (My Ph.D. dissertation consisted of a critique of the theoretical and empirical basis of neoclassical CGE trade models, and the construction of quantitative models based on alternative ...

The Progressive Economics Forum: Jason Kenney, TFWs, and Canada’s Services Trade

When he announced the sudden moratorium on new Temporary Foreign Workers (TFW) in the restaurant industry, Employment and Social Development Minister Jason Kenney tried to reconcile this dramatic about-face with his government’s long-standing support for the whole idea of migrant guest-workers.  So while strongly criticizing a few particular restaurants for their high-profile “abuses” of the program ...

The Progressive Economics Forum: Polozogistics: Nine Thoughts About the Choice of the New Bank of Canada Governor

  1. He’s Number Two: Stephen Poloz was widely acknowledged in economic and political circles as the second-best choice for the top job at the Bank of Canada. So the surprise was not that he was chosen. The surprise was, Why Not Tiff Macklem? Will someone please find out and tell the rest of us? 2. ...

The Progressive Economics Forum: The Canada-US FTA at 25

My take, in the Globe Economy Lab today.

Alberta Diary: U.S. grain and seed ports will kill a few more Canadian jobs – with a little help from Stephen Harper

Bunge’s $200-million US grain port at Longview, Wash. Below, U.S. police and strikers scuffle at the port. Back in 2009, when the destruction of the Canadian Wheat Board was still just a twinkle in Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s eye, work started on a $200-million US grain-handling terminal in the port of Longview, Wash., just south ...

Impolitical: Supply management & #LPC leadership

I have two reactions to the issue of supply management becoming the first prominent issue to be featured as part of the still very early Liberal leadership race. First, uh, how did this issue which most Canadians have not likely even heard of get to be a lead-in issue? Does it even deserve to be ...

The Progressive Economics Forum: Dutch Disease, the Canada – US Exchange Rate and Trade With Asia

Today’s Globe editorial provides further evidence of distorted economic reasoning being rolled out to attack Thomas Mulcair. “Mr. Mulcair seems to long for a golden age of manufacturing and a low dollar, but his longing won’t take Canada anywhere. Not only the dollar but Asian competition has inflicted damage on Canadian exporters.” The implication seems ...

The Progressive Economics Forum: Defending Green Jobs at the WTO

As a partner in Blue Green Canada, the United Steelworkers have issued the following news release: WTO Called Upon to Dismiss Japan, EU Challenge to Canadian Renewable Energy Policy Canadian NGOs and labour unions have sent an amicus curiae submission to the World Trade Organization (WTO) on the eve of a second hearing tomorrow into ...

The Progressive Economics Forum: The Current Account Deficit

The National Bank have published a very useful and interesting report on the current account deficit, which is now running at about 3% of GDP. They argue that the deficit – largely driven by a huge fall in our manufacturing and wider goods trade balance – has now become structural, and should be cause for ...

The Progressive Economics Forum: Trans-Pacific Partnership

The United Steelworkers’ union made the following submission to the Government of Canada earlier this week: The United Steelworkers union welcomes the opportunity to comment on Canada’s proposed entry into the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) free trade negotiations. Our union represents 200,000 Canadian workers, employed in every sector of the economy. While our traditional membership base ...