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  • What about the competition of foreign labor?

  • Do US workers lose their jobs when goods are imported?

  • These days everybody seems to be talking about NAFTA.

  • The North American Free Trade Agreement.

  • It is a free trade deal between three countries: Canada, United States and Mexico.

  • It's one of the most significant trade deals Canada has ever signed.

  • It's also at risk of being ripped up by this guy.

  • We have NAFTA which is a total and complete disaster.

  • Basically, Trump says NAFTA is a rotten deal for the United States, he wants to fix it or nix it.

  • But before we get into all that, let's back it up.

  • The idea of free trade has been kicking around for decades.

  • On our strength and growth depends the strength of others, the spread of free world trade and unity.

  • Even hundreds of years.

  • Foreign trade is the key to prosperity.

  • Free trade will bring on a great depression.

  • But by the 1980s people in Canada were pushing for a full-blown free trade deal with the United States.

  • Some worried that free trade with the States would kill jobs in Canada, and even erode our political independence.

  • The 1988 federal election was actually fought on this issue.

  • The conservative government of Brian Mulroney promised to sign a free trade agreement with the United States.

  • I believe that in my own modest way, I am nation building because I believe this benefits Canada and I love Canada.

  • Mulroney won.

  • Free trade became a thing, and a road was paved for a broader deal that pulled in Mexico.

  • Thus, six years later NAFTA was born.

  • Fast forward to now.

  • 3.5 billion dollars in trade, flows among the three countries every single day.

  • There was more than 750 billion dollars in trade between Canada and the US last year.

  • That makes the US by far Canada's biggest trading partner.

  • None of this was too controversial until Trump came along.

  • NAFTA, remember NAFTA what it's done to this country.

  • He blame NAFTA for gutting US manufacturing, and said American workers were getting ripped off.

  • True to his word, he wants to renegotiate the deal, and says that if he doesn't like it, the US will pull out.

  • So here we are, renegotiating a trade deal that props up hundreds of billions of dollars in trade each year.

  • What can we expect to happen?

  • For Canada there are a few sticking points.

  • The Americans want to sell more of their dairy products in Canada, but that would mean tinkering with Canada's long standing measures to protect our dairy industry.

  • A system called supply management.

  • The politicians have repeatedly promised to protect over the years.

  • There's also an American demand to remove an international dispute resolution panel from the agreement.

  • So that US companies claiming them being mistreated can have their cases heard in an American courtroom.

  • It's a complicated thing, but the bottom line is this: The Canadian government doesn't want NAFTA to be killed.

  • But assuming it survives, what it looks like after this renegotiation, and how that affects the Canadian economy remains to be seen.

  • For the Toronto Star, I'm Alex Ballingall.

What about the competition of foreign labor?

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NAFTA explained in 3 mins

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    Cyndi posted on 2019/03/26
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