The United States says it wants a deal signed this month, but one observer doesn’t expect an agreement until next year. | Getty image

Optimism wanes for quick NAFTA deal

The United States says it wants a deal signed this month, but one observer doesn’t expect an agreement until next year


It’s become an intriguing guessing game for trade analysts and a few media pundits: will a new North American Free Trade Agreement get done this month? Or is a May deal as likely as United States President Donald Trump taking a week-long break from Twitter? Patrick Leblond, University of Ottawa associate professor of public and […] Read more

At the heart of the dispute are U.S. allegations that Chinese joint venture requirements and other policies force American companies to turn over their intellectual property, costing them billions of dollars annually and giving China's state enterprises an edge in the race to develop new industries crucial to future growth. China denies such coercion. | File photo

Trump team demands China slash U.S. trade surplus by $200 billion, cut tariffs

WASHINGTON/BEIJING (Reuters) – The Trump administration has drawn a hard line in trade talks with China, demanding a $200 billion cut in the Chinese trade surplus with the United States, sharply lower tariffs and advanced technology subsidies, people familiar with the talks said on Friday. The lengthy list of demands was presented to Beijing before […] Read more

An inquisitive purebred Holstein cow awaits its turn in the milking parlour at Van den Pol Dairy. | File photo

Saving our supply managed beacons

With U.S. President Donald Trump’s “America First” rhetoric, it looked like NAFTA renegotiations would end in a stalemate. However, Canadian giveaways to appease Trump are keeping talks for a reformed North American Free Trade Agreement alive. Farmers and consumers must not be complacent regarding the federal government’s political commitments to defend supply management against Trump’s […] Read more


The supply management issue erupted early in U.S. President Donald Trump’s presidency when he condemned Canada’s system and used it as an example of how NAFTA was a bad deal and Canada was taking advantage of the United States.  |  File photo

Dairy not sounding like deal breaker

Americans would like to see NAFTA talks address supply management, but no one wants it to jeopardize the trade deal

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Canada’s dairy system continues to be the main agricultural issue vexing North American Free Trade Agreement renegotiations, U.S. politicians and agriculture officials say. It was the only specific NAFTA complaint about agricultural trade raised by a number of Washington players in meetings with North American Agricultural Journalists. “We want to make sure […] Read more

U.S. President Donald Trump has kept the trade rhetoric rolling, but with so many pots on the fire, might Canadian trade be forgotten?  |  REUTERS/Carlos Barria photo

Dull and diligent likely to prevail over Trump trade tactics

America’s mercurial, combative, antagonistic and games-playing president fancies himself a brilliant negotiator. But I’m betting he’s going to get fleeced by Canada’s dull and diligent trade team, and so successfully that he never even realizes he’s been had. I was just in Washington, D.C., and President Donald Trump’s trade talk is still the talk-of-the-town, which […] Read more


China said on Tuesday it will slap a hefty temporary deposit on imports of U.S. sorghum after finding the U.S. grain has damaged the domestic industry in a preliminary antidumping ruling, stirring trade tensions between the world's top two economies. | Twitter/@XHNews photo

As trade spat grows, China hits U.S. sorghum imports with hefty deposit

BEIJING (Reuters) – China said on Tuesday it will slap a hefty temporary deposit on imports of U.S. sorghum after finding the U.S. grain has damaged the domestic industry in a preliminary antidumping ruling, stirring trade tensions between the world’s top two economies. CHS Inc and other U.S. companies will have to put a 178.6 […] Read more

U.S. farm groups, politicians reject emergency subsidies

WASHINGTON — With fear and anxiety gripping American farmers as a trade war with China looms, the United States government is considering emergency subsidies. But major players of both political parties in the U.S. Congress express worries about special payments to farmers. Many say that staying out of a trade war would be a better […] Read more

U.S. Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue on Wednesday said negotiations were the preferred method for easing trade tensions between China and the United States. | Michael Raine photo

Negotiations still best tool in U.S.-China trade row – Perdue

(Reuters) – U.S. Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue on Wednesday said negotiations were the preferred method for easing trade tensions between China and the United States. “Our first goal is to negotiate ourselves out of the saber rattling that has occurred and to make sure that these market disruptions do not have a permanent impact,” Perdue […] Read more


After weeks of rumours and speculation, China announced a proposed 25 percent tariff on American beans today. | Screencap via Twitter/@XHNews

China slaps tariff on U.S. soybeans

A Chinese tariff on U.S. soybeans is now a reality. After weeks of rumours and speculation, China announced a proposed 25 percent tariff on American beans today. The move came only hours after the U.S. announced a list of Chinese products that will soon be subject to tariffs, such as flat screen televisions, aircraft parts, […] Read more

India’s import duties on pulses, including lentils, are part of domestic politics in that country.  |  File photo

What game is India really playing?

Trade issues in pulses are on the minds of many western Canadian farmers, especially because India recently hiked its chickpeas import tariff again, although it doesn’t affect the kabuli type that is predominantly grown in Canada. We know the Canadian government is doing what it can to promote trade relations. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s recent […] Read more