By on February 14, 2017

Donald Trump Sr. at #FITN in Nashua, NH, Image: By Michael Vadon (Donald Trump Sr. at #FITN in Nashua, NH) [CC BY-SA 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

Since the inauguration of U.S. president Donald Trump, Canadian political and auto industry officials have taken every opportunity to highlight the economic prosperity and millions of jobs that depend on cross-border trade. And the lobbying seems to have paid off.

At a joint press conference following the first official meeting Monday between Trump and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, the U.S. leader praised the economic ties between the two countries.

“We have a very outstanding relationship with Canada. We’ll be tweaking it,” said Trump. “We’ll be doing certain things that are going to benefit both of our countries.”

At the same time, he took a swipe at the trading relationship with Mexico, calling it “unfair to the United States.”

Mexico, along with Canada and the United States, signed on to the 22-year-old North American Free Trade Agreement, a pact Trump has repeatedly slammed as a “disaster” for American manufacturing and blue collar workers. But he has singled out America’s southern neighbor as the primary culprit for the loss of U.S. manufacturing jobs, threatening to slap a 20-percent tax on Mexican-made goods entering the U.S.

As a way of stemming the outflow of jobs, Trump has pledged to either renegotiate NAFTA to secure more favorable terms, or scrap it altogether.

While Trump indicated Mexico would face drastic changes, Canada appeared to be getting off with a minor reworking of its trade relationship with the United States. 

Trump’s conciliatory tone toward Canada makes both economic and political sense, said Flavio Volpe, president of the Automotive Parts Manufacturers’ Association. Canada is the largest U.S. trading partner with one of the smallest trade deficits. In 2016, America’s trade imbalance with its northern neighbor totaled $11 billion compared to $63 billion with Mexico, according to statistics compiled by the U.S. Census Bureau.

“We are for the most part a compliant trading partner,” said Volpe, president of the Automotive Parts Manufacturers’ Association. “We play by the rules, we live and breathe in these regulatory debates on how much closer we can align with U.S. regulatory standards. I think it will be a healthy discussion for us.

“If you look at our trade balance, which seems to be a metric that they focus on, the Canada-U.S. relationship is essentially in balance.”

Canada is the largest consumer of American goods, purchasing $337.8 billion in goods and services in 2015, according to Canadian government statistics. As well, nearly nine million U.S. jobs depend on cross-border trade and investment.

Those jobs are largely located in 35 U.S. states that helped elect Trump who promised to bring back manufacturing jobs from lower-cost countries, like Mexico where auto workers earn about $8 an hour in wages and benefits compared to $47 an hour in the U.S.

Mexico’s steadily growing trade surplus with the U.S. is due, in large part, to its flourishing auto industry that’s revved up since signing on to NAFTA. Mexico has attracted more than $16 billion in investment by automakers since 2010 and nine of 11 North American car assembly plants announced since 2011, according to the Center for Automotive Research, an industry think tank based in Ann Arbor, Mich.

Meanwhile, Canada’s auto industry has been in steady decline, losing two vehicle assembly plants and being overtaken by Mexico in the global vehicle-production rankings.

Trump’s anti-NAFTA message has resonated with blue collar workers, including those belonging to unions that had endorsed Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton.

Shortly after Trump’s victory, Dennis Williams, the president of the United Auto Workers, said he would be willing to work with the new president on revamping NAFTA. “We need to enact trade policies that raise wages and improve working conditions here and abroad,” Williams said.

Mexico has emerged as Trump’s target as its auto industry has prospered under NAFTA, while Canada, like the U.S., has struggled to maintain its manufacturing footprint.

While Trump’s positive view of Canada has allayed fears among Canadian automotive producers, his pledge to review NAFTA keeps them on edge.

“An overhaul is risky because you have an agreement that works, that allows for the delivery of good quality, competitively priced cars to an American consumer,” said Volpe. “But, I think we can all reconcile ourselves with the fact that the lead partner wants to review an agreement that’s 22 years old. I think that’s good business, and we are supportive of a strategic review.”

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111 Comments on “Why Does Canada Trump Mexico in Eyes of New U.S. President?...”


  • avatar
    PrincipalDan

    Why does Canada Trump Mexico in the Eyes of New U.S. President?

    Because: poutine > nachos

  • avatar
    FreedMike

    Here’s yet another question that Trump is apparently too busy to answer, now that his national security adviser flamed out in three weeks.

    (And apparently, after spending months on the anti-Hillary jihad for being careless with classified info, the replacement is a guy who was…you guessed it…careless with classified intel…you can’t make that up, can you?)

    Let’s say we DO bring a bunch of manufacturing back here. That would do nothing but bad stuff to the Mexican economy, and their economy is largely to blame for the illegal immigration problem. I mean, if Mexicans could find good paying jobs back home, they wouldn’t be risking themselves to come here illegally. Canadians certainly aren’t.

    So…we put a wrench into their economy, and make their internal problems worse, while increasing the pressure on our own ability to “protect our borders.”

    Now, Trump’s saying NAFTA would be “renegotiated”? Why the f**k would Mexico sign on for any of that? What’s in it for them? Or is it just “screw Mexico day”? And how does this do anything but make the problem of illegal immigration worse?

    This guy’s Amateur Night.

    • 0 avatar
      dwford

      So we tell millions of US manufacturing workers that we gave their jobs away to low cost countries as kind of a bribe not to invade us or attack us?

      • 0 avatar
        FreedMike

        That’s a nasty story to tell…assuming, of course, that there was a shred of reality to it.

        In the real world, as opposed to some “Man in the High Castle” alternative universe where Mexico invades us, we’re talking about a country that can’t even police itself, much less invade the United States of America, a country that could push a button and obliterate 80% of the Mexican population approximately 14.3 minutes later. Anyone not wearing two million sunblock in Mexico City would have a real bad day.

        • 0 avatar
          OldManPants

          “Weapons of Mass Migration”. Good book, available for Kindle.

          • 0 avatar
            Lou_BC

            “Weapons of Mass Migration”

            By 2043 whites will be the minority in the USA.

            Gotta get that wall built ASAP.

        • 0 avatar
          mason

          “we’re talking about a country that can’t even police itself, much less invade the United States of America,”

          Except they invade us on the daily. I’m all for people coming here legally to better themselves but the opposite happens on a very large scale. And then there’s the real elephant in the room, why US manufacturing has really gone south of the border. No EPA and low wages. If US manufacturers had to build factories in Mexico and abroad to US standards there would be alot less factories built in Mexico.
          Even the playing field, and let the chips fall where they will.

          • 0 avatar
            ect

            T his gets really tiresome, but US manufacturing is growing, not shrinking. It’s also become much more automated, so employment has fallen.

            The US manufactures twice as much as it did in 1992, with only 2/3 the labour force.

            Lots of new jobs in IT and other services, though.

            Oh, those jobs at Carrier that Trump “saved” by bribing the company? The company plans to automate them out of existence within a year or two, using the money that Trump arranged to pay them. What a dealmaker!

      • 0 avatar
        Big Al from Oz

        dwford,
        Gave your jobs away?

        Nonsense.

        Compete. At the next Olympics we should spot America so it can win all the Gold medals.

      • 0 avatar
        ect

        We didn’t give their jobs away. NAFTA has created more jobs in the US than it killed, technology even moreso. And better jobs, too.

        Part of the perception problem is that the benefits of free trade occur broadly across the economy, affecting a lot of people to some extent, while the losers tend to be clustered in only a few sectors.

    • 0 avatar
      OldManPants

      “I mean, if Mexicans could find good paying jobs back home…”

      I think we also must accept the need for a precondition like “keep d1cks in pants” when imagining their optimal choices.

      The US owes overbreeders nothing, nearby or distant.

  • avatar
    Big Al from Oz

    Trump is a racist pandering to the minority. He incites fear to gain control.

    He’s a bully.

    So, he’s bad mouthed Japan and China. He was told to pull his head in and he has done so.

    But he is scared of the Russians, why?

    He is a weak excuse of a human.

    Like what occurred when Trump had a tantrum and hung up on the Australian Prime Minister, he faced a backlash.

    Americans will not tolerate Trump bullying Canada.

    Like all Reality TV hosts he’s a populist.

    A clueless face representing the great American nation. I am sympathetic to my fellow Americans.

    • 0 avatar
      Hummer

      Evidence? Non-existent.

      Must suck having a leader that’s a blow over, we used to have the same problem.

      • 0 avatar
        mtmmo

        Well said. The Trump Derangement Syndrome snowflakes operate without evidence 24/7/365.

        • 0 avatar
          Lou_BC

          “Trump Derangement Syndrome”
          How original.

          A bastardization of Bush Derangement Syndrome coined by neoconservative pundit Charles Krauthammer.

          I looked up “Special Snowflake Syndrome” – This is the behavior demonstrated by someone with that ailment:

          “This condition, if left untreated, can radically alter the carrier’s demeanor, to include any of the following: a complete devolution to child-like behavior, temper tantrums, and/or fits of narcissistic rage.”

          Wow……

          Orange Snowflake In Chief

          • 0 avatar
            Hummer

            “a complete devolution to child-like behavior, temper tantrums, and/or fits of narcissistic rage.””

            Like setting a immigrants limo on fire, busting out windows of businesses, throwing a used maxi-pad in a pro-life individuals face, or death threats to anyone that doesn’t viciously attack Trump.

            Snow flakes indeed.

    • 0 avatar
      nemosdad

      Big Al, people focus on a smaller region where they live vs a national scale when it comes to these matters. By and large the average American doesn’t really give a shit about Canada. Other than northern areas of northern States nobody is going to care about Trump bullying Canada.

      NAFTA essentially screws Canada far harder than it does the US. It’s a net win for Trump to keep things status quo, with a “winner of a tweak” here and there.

      I hope Joe Trudeau negotiates a better deal for Canada with the overall tweaks.

  • avatar
    dwford

    The answer to “why? is pretty simple. Canada is an advanced economy with a similar standard of living to the US. You don’t see companies leaving the US to set up shop in Canada. The huge wage disparity between Mexico and the US causes jobs to flow south, especially with free trade.

    Free trade doesn’t work between an advanced economy and a third world economy. Unless you are happy to see the wealthier country slowly drained of its wealth.

    • 0 avatar
      Big Al from Oz

      So, its okay to classify others by what they can afford?

      Why not help the unfortunate? Bring them up to our standard of living?

      They will then be less competitive and greater trade will be realised.

      Just stopping others from advancing to maintain control allows them to remain more competitive.

      This achieves nothing.

      • 0 avatar
        agent534

        @Big Al from Oz Thats a nice story, but that hasn’t happened with Mexico. The Mexican economy grew slower than other Latin American countries under NAFTA. Mexican workers wages are stagnant, and never moved to try and match US wages like Al Gore promised when he lied about NAFTA while debating Ross Perot.

        NAFTA and other trade deals are all bout corporations moving jobs to areas where they have leverage over workers, not about trying to bring them out of poverty. Wages grew a tiny bit in China, and they were looking to TPP to move production to other cheaper areas.
        A fair trade deal would involve Mexico placing a tariff on exports to the US equal to the additional cost of labor in the US, then using those funds to bring their people up. That is not happening.

        • 0 avatar
          Big Al from Oz

          What?

          It has been ocurring.

          Do you think a nation will develop in less than twenty years?

          It took Western Europe 40 years to catch up after WWII. And these nations already had more advanced government.

          I do believe rather than threatening Mexico with tariffs over a wall Trump should use corruption and influence governmental (governance) changes to Mexico.

          As is seen around the world industrialisation should also include changes to society.

          Modernisation of society must go hand in hand with a modernising economy.

          The Japanese became more successful by adopting the better aspects of Western governance.

          Islamic nations want what the West has, but the Islamic nation refusing to adopt more liberal societies are finding it harder to manage technical advancement.

          These go hand in hand. The Saudi Arabians are now realising they must modernise their society to have economic success.

          Mexico and China need to make this next step to truly succeed as modern countries and we (the West) must influence this.

          • 0 avatar
            Jeff Semenak

            So, Al… How’s your auto industry doing?

          • 0 avatar
            Big Al from Oz

            Jeff,
            Great. Why do we need to compete in the menial assembly jobs? Let countries like Thailand build the vehicles.

            We will continue to design vehicles and maintain the higher paying jobs.

            We don’t want $10- $12ph jobs like the US. Keep those jobs.

          • 0 avatar
            agent534

            @Big Al from Oz
            Mexico has suffered under NAFTA. They are not moving forward, they are being repressed. It is a bad deal for Estados Unidos Mexicanos as much as it is a bad deal for the United States of America.

            “But Mexico’s NAFTA experience has suffered from a disconnect between the promises of some of its supporters—that the pact would deliver rapid growth, raise wages, and reduce emigration—and the deal’s more mixed outcomes. Between 1993 and 2013, Mexico’s economy grew at an average rate of just 1.3 percent a year during a period when Latin America was undergoing a major expansion. Poverty remains at the same levels as in 1994. And the expected “wage convergence” between U.S. and Mexican wages didn’t happen, with Mexico’s per capita income rising at an annual average of just 1.2 percent in that period—far slower than Latin American countries such as Brazil, Chile, and Peru.

            Mexican unemployment also rose, which some economists have blamed on NAFTA for exposing Mexican farmers, especially corn producers, to competition from heavily subsidized U.S. agriculture. A study led by CEPR economist Mark Weisbrot estimates that NAFTA put almost two million small-scale Mexican farmers (PDF) out of work, in turn driving illegal migration to the United States. (Migration to the United States, both legal and illegal, more than doubled after 1994, peaking in 2007. However, the flow reversed after 2008 as more Mexican-born immigrants began leaving the country than arriving. Experts attribute this to stricter border enforcement, changing demographics in Mexico, and the combination of fewer available jobs in the United States along with more in Mexico.)”

    • 0 avatar
      FreedMike

      OK, now this is something to talk about, versus “Mexico’s gonna invade us.”

      And you’re right, Canada’s more of an “equal” trade partner. But if you say “free trade doesn’t work between an advanced economy and a third world economy,” you’re also saying we shouldn’t trade with countries like Brazil, or Vietnam, or India, or scores of other developing nations. Seems to me that’s a whole lot of cutting our own noses off to spite Mexico’s face, if you ask me.

      And if you think we don’t have an interest in keeping Mexico economically stable, consider that the alternative is a hostile, fairly advanced nation with oil money and a history of warfare against us…with thousands of miles of border.

      Smart money wants Mexico to develop economically. The alternative is a whole different kind of s**t show.

      • 0 avatar
        agent534

        @FreedMike- Free trade does not exist with any of the countries you mentioned. They all have protectionist tariffs to force local production. Imports are taxed at very high levels. In ALL the countries you mentioned.

        • 0 avatar
          FreedMike

          So the solution that a) makes trade more equitable and b) helps Mexico develop (which is in our national interests) is…?

          I’m going to go with anything but “build a wall and make Mexico pay for it,” or “screw over the companies that took of an entirely legal process of investing billions of dollars in capital in Mexico”. How does their economy grow with all those jobs yanked back? Whether we like it or not, our interest should be at least in part to help them develop, because their failure to develop is what is causing all these problems Trump supporters are so fond of talking about.

          What’s your take?

          • 0 avatar
            agent534

            @FreedMike
            Mexico is a failed state run by narco terrorists. How much does the USA have to sacrifice to prop it up?

            We can’t help Mexico develop by making America poor. That does nothing to help.
            The race to the bottom is real.

            Free Trade with Mexico does not raise them up. It concentrates the wealth of this country in the Walmarts of the world.

            Our policies have to benefit Americans first, something even Bernie Sanders believes this: “Nobody I know believes we should place a wall around this country. Trade is a good thing, but what we must begin doing is negotiating fair trade agreements that reflect the interests of working families in America, working families in other countries, and not just large multinational corporations and the CEOs who help write these trade agreements.”

          • 0 avatar
            FreedMike

            Like it or not, Mexico’s on our southern border, which is thousands of miles long, and it’s not going anywhere.

            Is it better that they be prosperous, or not? That’s the question, isn’t it?

        • 0 avatar
          jjster6

          No… they all have protectionist tariffs that increase the price of goods and services in the local market, hence reducing their standard of living. FIFY.

    • 0 avatar
      Lou_BC

      “Unless you are happy to see the wealthier country slowly drained of its wealth.’

      Countries with a trade surplus need to shift money to the country with the imbalance to keep currency levels from climbing. That balances the trade deficit.

      Another point is the fact that wealthy countries like the USA invest in poor countries to make money. No one is investing in places like Mexico to benefit Mexico. Free trade benefits big business more than it benefits the populace. Oddly enough, no one blames USA corporations for going there. We blame Mexico for USA companies “capitalizing” on poor labour and poor environmental stewardship.

      We have seen considerable unrest in the USA due to “globalization” because there hasn’t been any investment in helping unskilled labour adjust to changing work conditions. It is easier to blame foreigners than try to fix the mess in one’s own country. It is also easier to blame the opposing political party than to find common middle ground.

      Mexico welcomed USA companies. USA companies went there to make money BUT “we” need to punish them for our own corporate greed?

      The USA does not need to go after China since their burgeoning middle class will no longer tolerate poor work conditions, poor environmental conditions, and poor human rights. They are exerting pressure on the system to correct those issues which will bring their economy and social conditions up to the level of typical Western Democracies.

  • avatar
    bikegoesbaa

    I have no problem with US companies manufacturing in nations that are roughly equivalent to the US in terms of wages and environmental/worker protections. Nothing wrong with going international for a broader skill set, different perspective, or to be closer to the market; and these nations are competing on an even playing field.

    I do have a problem with them manufacturing in nations where the primary draw is “cheap wages and few laws to get in the way” and the host nation is basically offering an end run around first-world standards.

    I will leave it to the reader to determine which of the above descriptions better applies to Mexico or Canada.

    • 0 avatar
      DearS

      Do we have a problem then selling goods to any country with a lower standard of living. Should we only sell American goods to rich Americans?

      The mess is complicated we need level heads.

      • 0 avatar
        Big Al from Oz

        I think bike lives in one of those secure estates. He fears mingling in stores and probably buys on line so he doesn’t leave his piece of Utopia.

        Or, his comment is false to justify his stance or lack of security. He can not truly believe his comment.

        So, what does he think of those $7.50ph US workers on less than the average Mexican wage?

  • avatar
    agent534

    Mexico’s gdp per capita today is $18.5K vs $56k for the US & $44k for Canada. Mexicans don’t have the money to buy goods from the US or Canada, they were never going to be anything but a supply of cheap labor.

    • 0 avatar
      FreedMike

      And what does all that cheap labor do when the jobs from the American factories disappear?

      They do two things:

      1) They pour over our border so they can earn a living
      2) They de-stabilize the Mexican government…with the Mexican narco-cartels waiting in the wings to fill the power vacuum.

      Neither is good for the United States.

      Like it or not, any solution to this problem has to be made with an eye towards keeping Mexico stable.

    • 0 avatar
      Big Al from Oz

      agent454,
      Did you know over 40% of food sold in Mexican Walmarts is US produce?

      Were does Walmarts Mexican profits go? Or for that matter any auto manufacturer?

      Did you know Metsalsa is the world’s leading and largest chassis designer and producer?

      Its a Mexican company. And they employ Americans in their US factories. They have factories around the World.

      Metsalsa designs chassis for BMW, MB, all US vehicle manufacturers most of the world’s major brands.

      Before you spruik your paraniod racism do some research.

      Did you know Australia imports 5 times more from the US than the US imports from Australia? So are you Americans like Mexicans or Chinese? You guys have a piddly minimum wage and waitresses get less per hour than a kid gets for pocket money.

      You seem to be foolish by using alternative facts to support your fear.

      Grow up and become a man and not present yourself like a fearful child.

      Oh, the difference (advantage) in what the US has in trade over Australia, makes up for the 40 or 50 billion loss in Mexico. So how does the US lose out?

      Don’t forget the trade imbalance between Canada and the US, in the US’s favour.

      You talk bullsh!t. Do a little research and learn.

      • 0 avatar
        agent534

        @Big Al from Oz since when does gdp per capita= paraniod racism?
        The research has been done, facts posted. Trying to dismiss them is delusional.
        You haven’t even been paying attention, as I’ve stated it is only the Walmarts of the world that profit off of Free Trade, further consolidating the wealth of the United States in the top 1% while the workers in the United States of America suffer.

        Mexico’s top import to the United States of America last year was El Chapo because Mexico is a failed state run by narco terrorists and couldn’t find a government facility honest enough to hold him in custody. But I guess that is racism too?

        • 0 avatar
          Big Al from Oz

          The US had drugs well before Mexico’s crime gangs rose to prominence.

          Geez, what does Coca stand for in Coca Cola? Talking of soft drinks, why does US soft drinks contain caffeine? To get kids addicted. Most every modern nation has stopped the use of caffeine in soft drinks other than Cola to reduce kids becoming addicted to soda.

          Look at all major US cities. Fatal shootings, slums etc.

          Maybe the US should tend to this first. What is the economic loss to the US caused by this.

          How many billions is unnecessarily spent on US health? Cleaning up your health system will save 100s of billions.

          There are many more pressing isdues in the US that can be fixed before you allow Trump and yourselves blaming the world for your woes.

          Mexico and China are not the cause of US jobs leaving. You are 20 years to late for such a comment.

  • avatar
    mtmmo

    Mexico at least has a stronger leader than Canada as no one respects Trudeau. The Chinese refer to him as ‘Little Potato’.

  • avatar
    Duaney

    Lots of reasons to prefer Canada. Mexico can’t seem to stem the massive corruption, Mexico is the direct pipeline for drugs flowing to the USA, mass murders and gang battles are a constant. We don’t see this in Canada.

    • 0 avatar
      DearS

      Mexico has a supply problem we have a demand problem. Together we have a drug economy.

      • 0 avatar
        ect

        DearS, Mexicans will tell you they they only has a supply problem because the US has a demand problem.

        They liken it to a swimming pool, with Mexico as the diving board. They have a point.

        • 0 avatar
          DearS

          Agreed. Both sides have a point IMO. American junkies are addicted to drugs, Mexican cartel worship money. Both supply and demand sides are run by sick people. We need solutions for dis-ease.

          I obsess about cars I cannot afford, but I am not going to sell drugs to get those cars or get high to forget about it. I also have bigger issues, but again selling or doing drugs is not the answer. People need help on both sides of the border.

  • avatar
    JimZ

    because Canadians are (mostly) white and (mostly) speak English. lot harder to demonize someone who looks and talks the same as you.

  • avatar
    Whatnext

    As dwford pointed out Canada and the USA are first world countries with similar wages and regulations. Mexico definitely isn’t, which is why trade can never be “free” with it.

    There is a movement growing for a CANZUK free trade area encompassing the UK, Canada, Australia and New Zealand which would work, because all shares similar values and standards of living.

    • 0 avatar
      Alfisti

      As an Aussie living in Canada, I definitely feel Canada has more in common with Australia than the USA.

      Political spectrum, separation of church and state, health care, redistribution of income and gun laws are all very similar.

      Weather is a bit different though. Just a tad.

      • 0 avatar
        Jagboi

        “As an Aussie living in Canada, I definitely feel Canada has more in common with Australia than the USA.”

        Interesting. After visiting, I thought New Zealand was closer to Canada culturally, and Australia much closer to the USA.

        • 0 avatar
          ect

          Jagboi/Alfisti, in my experience you’re both right.

          Canada does have a lot in common with Australia that it does not have in common with the US (I’m a citizen of both Canada and the US, btw, and have done business in both Australia and New Zealand), and I have always seen the parallels between the Canada-US relationship and the Australia-New Zealand relationship.

          There is a pub in the Yorkville area of Toronto that I’ve been known to visit that’s owned by a kiwi and is generally decorated with Antipodean memorabilia. Apart from the fact that it does a huge business despite an almost complete lack of funding on decor, I’ve always been amused by the sign above the bar that reads “I only support 2 teams – New Zealand, and anyone playing against Australia”.

          • 0 avatar
            Big Al from Oz

            Did you know all Kiwis own velcro gloves. They have so many sheep. An Aussie joke towards our Kiwi friends.

      • 0 avatar
        Big Al from Oz

        Alfisti,
        I have experienced both the US and Australia as a child and adult.

        There are far more commonalities between the US and Australia than differences.

        But there are some notable differences. The biggest one I think is the Aussie “giving someone a fair go” as we call it. Another one is the belief that is one is good enough to work, then their wage should be livable.

        We don’t have slums, ghettoes, the number of homeless that the US has. Another important aspect of the US is the visibility of so many people that are physically handicapped. Why not just fix these people up so they can work? The country can only benefit.

        We also don’t have the level of disparity. Just shopping in the US NE, Florida, SoCal or where I’m currently “living” Seattle region is the number of seniors working supermarkets, fast food joints and other menial jobs. We have mainly kids that do this work. Like the US used to be like.

        This is due to poor wealth among the bulk of the US population.

        Oddly enough our taxes are very equivalent as a percentage of GDP to the US.

        Food shopping as well is expensive in the US. Many items (mainly fresh food and staples) you pay the same as us, but in USD, a third more expensive.

        Our average wage/income is $75 000AUD a year. What is hurting Australia is housing costs, but this is only in areas of Sydney and Melbourne.

      • 0 avatar
        Big Al from Oz

        Jagboi,
        Australia also has a lot of the UK. We have newsagents, butcher shops, chemists, bakeries, fruit and veg shops, etc.

        If you want good meat you go to the burcher, not the supermarket which sells prepacked meat.

        Australia has significantly less big box stores than the US and many small shops specialising in what ever you want.

        We have fewer strip malls. We seem to have more large undercover shopping centres.

        Our roads are worse as well. We can learn from the US about highways. But we have so few people in a large area.

    • 0 avatar
      ect

      Whatnext, I have a feeling that the movement for a CANZUK free trade area exists mostly in your own mind. I’m a complete news junkie, and I’ve never seen any mention of the thought outside a very few extremist (and sometimes overtly racist) websites.

      BTW, Canada is a pretty diverse place, staring with fact that 25% of the population speak French, not English.

      • 0 avatar
        Whatnext

        @ect uh no: http://business.financialpost.com/fp-comment/in-the-trump-era-the-plan-for-a-canadian-u-k-australia-new-zealand-trade-alliance-is-quickly-catching-on

        • 0 avatar
          ect

          Whatnext, with all respect, a guy in a right-wing think tank trying to weave together some VERY tenuous threads is not a mass movement.

          Apart from NAFTA, Canada has a number of bilateral FTAs in place, and may add to that roster in the future, as is happening with the EU. If Britain does leave the EU (I remain skeptical) there could be a bilateral FTA with the UK.

          But a CANZUK agreement of the kind that Lilico envisages has absolutely zero chance of coming to pass.

    • 0 avatar
      Big Al from Oz

      I think these countries already operate under some form of FTA already.

  • avatar
    Dirty Dingus McGee

    Well, so much for keeping politics off of TTAC. I thought after the debacle with M. Baruth, politics would be kept more in check. Instead, there seems to be an article EVERY FRIGGIN DAY, designed to stir the pot. If I want politics, there are a jillion sites out there to read/comment at. I was hoping that the EIC would have kept a firmer control over this, or at least the moderators would have grown a pair and cleaned up some of this horse hockey(I do expect this post to get deleted for calling them out tho).

    There are plenty of sites out there that stick to car news. TTAC is rapidly becoming a Canadian version of Jalopnik, which also was at one time a decent site. Now both are nearly a sub Reddit whining chamber.

    Sad days indeed.

    • 0 avatar
      Big Al from Oz

      Because this is very relevant to the auto industry.

      Government controls and regulations affects global vehicle trade.

      Some comments do diverge, but the people in those threads would not comment if they did not want to.

  • avatar
    orenwolf

    This was a great, well researched article. Thanks, TTAC!

  • avatar
    philipwitak

    america did take a dump. and out plopped trump. a steaming’ stinking’ pile of rancid, republican, trump.

    bye-bye

  • avatar
    cleek

    It comes down to the larger trade imbalance: finished goods in particular.

    I would be interested in better understanding how the Canadian auto industry evolved and how our northern neighbors were able to attract US auto industrial development. Was it through negotiated trade preference (Mexico), strategic acquisitions (Aussie) or other means?

    note to the trolls: the greedy, exploitive racist, sexist, religious, linguistic angles has been sufficiently covered, so if you can’t comment on technical, commercial, etc elements, please try and stay under your respective bridges for this particular question)

    • 0 avatar
      pbx

      Canada imposed a 35% duty on imported cars in the early 1900’s. Canadian car companies, such as they were, either collaborated with Detroit or were taken over so as to avoid this tariff.

      At the same time Canada had a ‘free trade’ agreement with members of the British Empire which included the UK, Australia, New Zealand etc. US car companies were able to export Canadian built cars to these countries duty free and it was a very lucrative arrangement.

      By the end of the 1920s, Canada was the second-largest vehicle producer in the world and a major exporter.

      • 0 avatar
        Big Al from Oz

        pbx,
        Very good, Australia’s love for the Falcon started in Canada.

        Also many F-100s came from Canada.

      • 0 avatar
        Lou_BC

        pbx – they also stated, “to sell here you have to build here.”

        • 0 avatar
          ect

          Lou_BC, “build here” is kind of an interesting concept, isn’t it? One could build a car in any location consisting entirely of parts sourced from other locations.

          My second company car was a Jeep Cherokee designed by AMC and built by Chrysler just after they acquired it. I recall that almost none of the parts seemed to originate with AMC. The 4wd system was from Chrysler, the electrics were mostly Delco, the transmission was from Peugeot (go figure!), and the 4.0 inline six engine was an AMC stretch of a 4-cylinder motor design they bought from GM. I remember that some of the stuff in the engine compartment was labelled Mitsubishi, and the glass was made in Mexico. (this was 1987, pre-NAFTA). One wondered if AMC actually made anything, or just bought the parts and assembled them.

          Having said that, Canadian companies like Magna and Linamar seem to have done quite well as parts suppliers. I know there are others, on a smaller scale.

          • 0 avatar
            pbx

            The current language appears to have changed ‘built’ to ‘assembled’. Also Magna was so successful as a parts supplier that in 2009 they made an offer to purchase Opel from GM

          • 0 avatar
            Lou_BC

            pbx – didn’t Magna try to buy Chrysler?

  • avatar
    ItsBob

    Cleek

    I would be interested in better understanding how the Canadian auto industry evolved and how our northern neighbors were able to attract US auto industrial development. Was it through negotiated trade preference (Mexico), strategic acquisitions (Aussie) or other means?
    —————————————————————–
    When I first started working in the auto business in Canada it was 1967.
    Ford, G.M., and Chrysler all had plants in Canada, but owned by their USA head office.

    This was pre NAFTA and the deal was so simple and it worked well.
    For every vehicle they sold in Canada, they had to build one.
    Not necessarily the exact model but an equivalent quantity.

    I have simplified it but that was the premise and was good for Canada and the US owned companies. Then NAFTA happened and I think Canadian production has receded since.

    • 0 avatar
      ect

      Interestingly, the Canada-US Auto Pact was as much a treaty between the automakers and the governments as between Canada and the US.

      One feature was that, based on production in Canada, the Big 3 could import cars from anywhere – not just the US. So, the execrable Vauxhalls that GM brought in from the UK, and the excellent Mitsubishis that Chrysler brought in from Japan, all landed in Canada duty-free. Other imports (VW, Toyota, Datsun, etc.) had to pay import duties.


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