Border divides trade deal opinions

It’s interesting to take a quick look at how the Canadian and U.S. media viewed the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement in the immediate aftermath of its announcement.

In Canada, it was mainly relief. In the U.S., it was mostly, “did we win?”

The Toronto Star noted that it “came down to making a few acceptable concessions in order to keep the most important aspects of NAFTA in place.”

The Globe and Mail observed that, “Canada’s chief concession was the only thing Mr. Trump was stuck on: getting greater access to our dairy, poultry and egg markets.… Canada, at least, held its ground in a thankless role.”

The National Post said, “This is a win for Canada — though admittedly only by the rather low standard of victory being defined as avoiding economic turmoil.”

An op-ed in The New York Times observed that “the media spotlight on Canada has obscured a bigger problem for the region: under the new terms, North American trade is headed off the rails and, perhaps along with it, political stability south of the border.”

The Los Angles Times said, “Trump gets credit for turning a few dials in the right direction. It’s a modest notch in the president’s belt.”

The Chicago Tribune said Trump’s deal “has worked better than his detractors expected.… He won a big concession by persuading Ottawa to take steps to open up its highly protected dairy industry.… We take it as good news that Dairy Farmers of Canada immediately denounced the change.”

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