Consul General of Canada in Atlanta, Nadia Theodore, discusses U.S. and Canadian trade

Consul General of Canada in Atlanta, Nadia Theodore, delivered the following remarks at the 11th Annual Southeastern United States - Canadian Provinces Alliance Conference on June 4, 2018.

"We come together at a challenging time in the history of Canada-U.S. trade. I’m sure I don’t need to remind anyone here that we are talking about the world’s largest bilateral trading relationship by far, the Canada-United States successful economic and security partnership. And the compelling facts continue to speak for themselves:

  • Canada is the single largest market for the United States.
  • We buy more from the U.S. than China, Japan and the United Kingdom combined.
  • Nearly 9 million U.S. JOBS depend on trade & investment with Canada.
  • Canadian travelers spend $16 billion in the U.S. every year.
  • Canada & the U.S. trade an average of $1.3 million in bilateral goods & services every minute of every day.
  • Five of the six states in the room have Canada as their number one export market and each of these six states has a trade surplus with Canada.

But, as much as some would like me to, I cannot ignore the “issue du jour.” So, let me highlight a few facts about the automobile, aluminum & steel sectors.

Canada and the U.S. make vehicles together to the benefit of our consumers and workers alike. For example, Alabama exports $2 billion in automobiles and over $62 million in engines & turbines to Canada.

Autos and auto parts account for the largest share of goods traded between Canada and the southeastern United States.  It is also accounts for the largest share of US goods trade with its NAFTA partners.

While Canada is the largest steel exporter to the United States, the U.S. enjoys a $2B surplus on steel with Canada. Canada also buys more steel from the United States than any other country (roughly half of US exports to the world).

These exports of aluminum serve companies such as Mercedes, Hyundai, Toyota/Mazda, Boeing, New Flyer, and Magna, that could all be adversely affected by the tariffs recently imposed on your friends, partner and ally.

As the American Aluminum Association said itself, these tariffs do little but disrupt the strategic supply chains of which more than 97% of U.S. aluminum industry depends on. And as U.S. steelworkers have said, the tariffs against Canada do nothing but hurt the industry in both countries.

I cannot ignore or hide the fact that to declare Canada a national security threat is deeply troubling – and I’ll admit – a bit insulting and saddening.

Canada & the U.S. have a relationship like no other. I truly hope that the meetings and discussions we have today and tomorrow will provide us the opportunity to be reminded of our uniquely strong, integrated and mutually beneficial relationship.

I truly believe that Canada and the U.S. will always do better when we are working together than apart – a win-win is possible. Let us move forward - together.

Thank you again for having me and for the strong friendship with my country. It is truly a pleasure to serve Canada in your great states. I wish you all every success during our meetings.

Thank you!"

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