Free Trade’s Impact on Canada

Daniel Schwanen’s December 30th op-ed in The Globe and Mail highlights the benefits of NAFTA to Canada’s economy, and the continuing effort required to gain liberalized trade’s economic benefits.  Schwanen serves as assistant vice president at the C.D. Howe Institute.  

Check out an excerpt from the article below:

In a quietly revolutionary reversal of history, Canadians now sell more high-value-added commercial services to the United States than they purchase from it. Open trade in services was a key pioneering goal of the FTA and NAFTA.

While resources remain the cornerstone of Canada’s economy and strong commodity prices have been a trade lifeline in the wake of the prolonged global recession, in volume terms non-resource exports have slightly outpaced resources since the onset of continental free trade. Not surprisingly, Canada’s labour productivity growth in the business sector improved markedly in the decade and a half following free trade with the United States.

Twenty-five years on, these agreements inform Canada’s contemporary approach to global markets – an approach that combines efforts to further remove obstacles to trade with the U.S. with a thrust toward deeper trade and investment ties with overseas partners.


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