The following PNWER statement on tariffs was released on November 15, 2018, during the PNWER Economic Leadership Forum in Whitehorse, Yukon.
UNWARRANTED TARIFFS ARE DISRUPTING TRADE BETWEEN THE WORLD’S CLOSEST ALLIES & LARGEST TRADING PARTNERS AND NEGATIVELY IMPACTING REGIONAL SUPPLY CHAINS
WHITEHORSE, YUKON - “We believe that unilateral tariffs between the US and Canada go against the principles of free and fair trade and only harm industries in both countries. When markets are open, and goods are transported freely across borders, the results are economic growth, new businesses and more and better job opportunities for individuals.”, said Pacific NorthWest Economic Region (PNWER) President Larry Doke, MLA Saskatchewan at the PNWER Economic Leadership Forum in Whitehorse, Yukon, on Thursday.
Oregon Senator Arnie Roblan, Past President of PNWER said, “Here in the Pacific Northwest, we are stronger by working closely together, and our relationships are intact because of the ongoing partnerships in every major sector of our economy, and in state, provincial, territorial, local, and tribal governments. The US should exempt Canada from any steel and aluminum tariffs, which are causing significant disruption to the largest trading relationship in the world.”
The US and Canada’s trading relationship is incredibly important to the Pacific Northwest. The US and Canada have the largest trading relationship in the world, and here in the Pacific Northwest, we benefit from the two-way trade of over USD $541 billion (CAD $630 billion) annually, of which about USD $22.6 billion (CAD $29 billion) is in the Pacific Northwest. Protectionism is seriously damaging the vital economic regional partnership in both of our countries.
The steel and aluminum tariffs may cost the US and Canada over USD $11 billion combined, and we could see losses of over 6,000 jobs, according to CD Howe Institute, a Canadian independent not-for-profit research institute fostering economically sound public policies.
As a result of the steel and aluminum tariffs, retaliatory tariffs from Mexico and Canada could cause US Agriculture exports to decline by USD $1.9 billion to these two trading partners.
The US tariffs on Canadian steel and aluminum products based on Section 232 US national security investigations are of great concern. As a trusted ally and partner, Canadian steel and aluminum products are used as vital inputs in the Canada-US manufacturing supply chains. Tariffs on these critical inputs are not only making consumer goods expensive in both countries, but also making North American products uncompetitive in international markets.
This cross-border region continues to work closely together every day with our interconnected and interdependent supply chains, and dozens of cross-border cooperative agreements on everything from our shared transboundary watersheds, cross-border airsheds, climate action, cross-border law enforcement, invasive species prevention, forest fire prevention, to defending our shared borders in the 60-year-old NORAD (North American Air Defense) System.
PNWER is an example of these interconnections and the ongoing relationships that make our bi-national region stand out in North America as a place where innovation happens, precisely because of the multi-faceted relationships of trust that have been built up for the past 30 years.