Skip to main content

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau speaks to media while meeting with Manitoba Premier, Brian Pallister during the Liberal Cabinet Retreat at the Fairmont Hotel in Winnipeg, Monday, Jan. 20, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Mike Sudoma

Mike Sudoma/The Canadian Press

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says Canada will move swiftly next week to formally approve North America’s new, long-delayed free trade pact.

Trudeau says the government will introduce a motion to apply some of its elements Jan. 27 when Parliament resumes, and will table legislation to ratify the deal two days later.

“Passing the new NAFTA in Parliament is our priority,” Trudeau said today at the end of a cabinet retreat in Winnipeg.

Story continues below advertisement

“Millions of Canadians depend on stable, reliable trade with our largest trading partners, from farmers in Alberta and autoworkers in Windsor, to aluminum producers in Saguenay and entrepreneurs in St John’s or in Vancouver.”

It is expected that the opposition Conservatives, who are ardent free traders, will support the legislation when Canada’s new minority Parliament reconvenes.

That would remove the final legal hurdle in preserving continentwide trade after President Donald Trump foisted the acrimonious renegotiation of the 25-year-old North American Free Trade Agreement on Canada and Mexico in 2017.

Trump threatened repeatedly to rip up the original NAFTA, a Sword of Damocles that hung over more than a year of negotiations that were key to Canada’s economy.

The fate of numerous sectors, including the auto industry, agriculture and manufacturing were on the line in the talks.

The U.S. is Canada’s top trading partner and the Trudeau government made major policy changes to preserve access to the crucial market in the face of the mercurial president’s protectionist threats.

Last week, the Republican-led U.S. Senate passed its implementation bill for the new U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement.

Story continues below advertisement

The Liberal government had been waiting for the U.S. to formally ratify the pact before passing its own bill, after Mexico ratified the deal back in June.

Our Morning Update and Evening Update newsletters are written by Globe editors, giving you a concise summary of the day’s most important headlines. Sign up today.

Related topics

Report an error
Due to technical reasons, we have temporarily removed commenting from our articles. We hope to have this fixed soon. Thank you for your patience. If you are looking to give feedback on our new site, please send it along to feedback@globeandmail.com. If you want to write a letter to the editor, please forward to letters@globeandmail.com.

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff.

We aim to create a safe and valuable space for discussion and debate. That means:

  • Treat others as you wish to be treated
  • Criticize ideas, not people
  • Stay on topic
  • Avoid the use of toxic and offensive language
  • Flag bad behaviour

Comments that violate our community guidelines will be removed.

Read our community guidelines here

Discussion loading ...

To view this site properly, enable cookies in your browser. Read our privacy policy to learn more.
How to enable cookies