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Global Economics

By Kathleen Macmillan


Trade Agreement (FTA) with the United States would herald an era of trade peace between the two countries. Instead, our trading relationship since 1989 has bordered on disharmonious at times with high profile and protracted countervailing duty cases involving softwood lumber and pork and a host of antidumping actions over steel, carpets, beer, and other products. It is tempting to attribute the recent slate of bilateral skirmishes to temporarily weak economic conditions and to see them as the price we must pay for the tremendous progress achieved on other trade fronts, most notably in reducing tariff and non-tariff barriers. But can Canadians afford to be too accepting when it comes to trade remedy measures, or should we continue to press for reform where we stand the greatest chance of success, that is in antidumping? Antidumping actions between the two countries remain an ongoing source of irritation. While relatively insignificant in terms of the volume of trade, 1 they are costly in terms of legal expenditures, management time, customer goodwill and the damage to our broader trading relationship. There is also growing evidence to suggest that trade actions of this nature offer, at best, short-term protection and could even be damaging in the longer term to recipient industries (Trebilcock an

Year: 2011
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