The job of running a country as great as Canada requires strong leadership. Our businesses and farmers understand that concept, they understand that Canadian products need a market to go to for them to succeed and for our econo- my to be strong. Whether that is aerospace, aluminum, wood, transportation, agriculture, fish and seafood, and renewable energy – free-trade is at the heart of that success.
Our Government rec- ognizes this and Canada is committed to deepening our trade ties with partners around the globe. Furthermore, our Government realizes the immense potential that Free-Trade Agreements offer Canadian businesses and farmers, which is why we have undertaken an aggressive and balanced trade agenda.
Currently Canada has Free-Trade Agreements in force with United States, Mexico, South Korea, Honduras, Panama, Jordan, Colombia, Peru, Costa Rica, Chile, Israel, and the Canada–European Free-Trade Association (Norway, Switzerland, Iceland and Liechtenstein). We have concluded negotiations and are awaiting the implementation of Canada–European Union: Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA). We are engaged in on-going negotiations with the Caribbean Community, Guatemala, Nicaraqua and El Salvador, India, Japan, Morocco, Singapore, Trans-Pacific Partnership, Ukraine as well as exploratory discussions with Turkey, Thailand, Philip- pines and MERCOSUR (Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay and Uruguay). Since 2006, Canada has concluded Free-Trade Agreements with no less than 38 countries bringing the total to 43, making up more than half of the global economy and representing nearly one quarter of the world’s countries.
In the 20 years since NAFTA was signed the GDP in North America has doubled and Canada has 4.7 million more jobs. Opening up markets for our products creates economic stability; trade in Canada is equivalent to 60% of our economy and it is also linked to one in five jobs, these are important figures to remember when considering who has the track record of strong leadership on trade.
Our Government remains committed to an ambitious and balanced approach to Free-Trade Agreements with our global partners. At a time when countries such as Greece are defaulting on loan payments because they refuse to rein in spending; talking tough and having the track record to make the necessary decisions to keep the country’s economy moving is what is needed. Our Government has that track record and our Government will not gamble with risky socialist tax and spend and protectionist policies like NDP and Liberals are proposing.
Please contact my Constituency office if you have any questions or concerns on any federally related matters, postage free, at: Bay #6A, 4612 – 50th Street, Ponoka, T4J 1S7; tel: 403-783-5530; toll free: 1-800-665-0865 or visit my web site: www. blainecalkinsmp.ca or on twitter at www.twitter.com/ blainecalkinsmp.