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Welcome movement on progressive trade agenda in USMCA – Policy Options

by ahnationtalk on October 12, 2018275 Views

The final text of the USMCA made important strides forward in areas such as Indigenous and labour rights, less so on gender and the environment.

October 12, 2018

The Trudeau government entered NAFTA negotiations last August with an ambitious progressive trade agenda. Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland used her testimony to the House of Commons International Trade Committee to explain that this meant strengthening labour and environmental rights, reworking dispute settlement, and adding new chapters on gender and Indigenous rights. A coalition of environmental, labour and civil society groups used the opportunity to outline their own broader requirements for trade negotiations that would foster inclusive and sustainable economic growth.

Trudeau and Freeland were criticized from the right for prioritizing politically correct virtue signalling that could make it harder to find a workable solution, given the number of other stumbling blocks in play and the economic importance of trade with the United States. Critics on the left were skeptical that Trudeau and Freeland were committed to meaningful reforms to a trade and investment agenda that has so often entrenched the rights of the economically powerful.

Read More: http://policyoptions.irpp.org/magazines/october-2018/welcome-movement-on-progressive-trade-agenda-in-usmca/

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