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This morning’s WSJ notes an agreement between Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper and French President (and rotating EU President) Nicolas Sarkozy to expand trade relations:
Prime Minister Stephen Harper and President Nicolas Sarkozy of France signed an agreement Friday to begin negotiations for a free trade pact between Canada and the European Union. A Canada-EU study released last week outlines the joint economic benefits of such a partnership, with two-way trade estimated to increase 22.9% by 2014.The proposed partnership goes a lot further than Nafta. In addition to allowing free trade in goods and services, it would harmonize regulations, open up the air-travel market, and boost opportunities in government-procurement. Most important, it would free the labor market so that skilled workers could move easily back and forth across the Atlantic.
Of course, Barack Obama threatened to unilaterally renegotiate NAFTA, so no wonder the Canadians are looking to Europe again for expanded trade opportunities. Thus, Europe. From CTV, a Canadian news outlet:
Transportation Minister Lawrence Cannon told Mike Duffy Live that Canada “has to seek out new markets” in these times of economic uncertainty.