Canada-EU trade deal would end favoritism
OTTAWA — Ottawa says a comprehensive trade deal with the European Union would protect Canada against countries that favour their own domestic industries. Trade Minister Peter Van Loan says if the federal government is successful, European countries would be unable to pass measures like the Buy American provisions that disadvantaged Canadian firms during the 2008-09 recession.
Ottawa and Washington negotiated a compromise over Buy American, but not before Canadian firms were shut out on hundreds of billions of dollars in stimulus contracts for state and local governments.
A key element of the Canada-European Union talks that resumed this week in Ottawa is in the area of government procurement. It is also the most controversial because it would open up provincial procurement to foreign competition.
G20 will deal with currency manipulation: Flaherty
OTTAWA — Finance Minister Jim Flaherty says he is concerned about the loonie’s volatility, but is refusing to commit the government to intervening if the currency rises far above parity with the U.S. dollar. The finance minister says currency manipulation is the problem not the solution to global economic imbalances. Many advanced economies, including Canada, have accused China of keeping its currency, the yuan, at an artificial low level in order to boost exports.