NAFTA deal delays hurting economy, says Prince Albert MP

By Nigel Maxwell
September 12, 2018 - 2:00pm

No NAFTA deal equals a huge risk to the national economy, according to the Member of Parliament for the Prince Albert riding.

Randy Hoback's comments come as the deadline for Canada to get a deal done enters the final two weeks. Hoback told farmnewsNOW the Trudeau government would have been far more successful had they been at the table when the deal between Mexico and the U.S. was signed last month.

"When you are actively participating in the negotiations, you can actually ward off and deflect and protect your key interests, but now you're in a scenario where you are late coming to the game and you are basically in a situation where you have to take it or leave it," Hoback said.

U.S. President Trump moved the deadline to Oct. 1. Hoback, who is also the Conservative party critc for Canada-U.S. relations said the delay is causing investors and employers in Canada to get very anxious.

"Talking to companies in Ontario and around Western Canada, a lot of companies are in work share or are going into work share. You know we are already seeing it in job losses," he said.

Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland was in Washington Tuesday, meeting with U.S. trade czar Robert Lighthizer. She told reporters afterwards the talks continue in a spirit of good faith on both sides. But she said negotiations are at a point where discussing them face-to-face with the prime minister is absolutely essential.

"You know it's really frustrating because whether we like Trump or not, he's doing what he can to defend American interests, we just want a prime minister who basically thinks the same thing," Hoback said.


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