Bloated Insane Pig Trump
2018-10-04 20:50:24 UTC
By Mike Blanchfield The Canadian Press
Canada has not included the United States in an upcoming meeting aimed at
saving the international trading system because it doesnt share the views
of the 13 invited countries, says the new Canadian trade minister.
Canada will host senior ministers from 13 like-minded countries for a
two-day discussion in Ottawa later this month to brainstorm ways to reform
the World Trade Organization, said Jim Carr, Canadas newly appointed
international trade diversification minister.
Carr said the group of countries hes convened ultimately wants to persuade
Washington of the continued usefulness of the WTO, but for now the best way
forward is without the U.S. in the room.
We think that the best way to sequence the discussion is to start with
like-minded people, and thats whom we have invited and theyre coming,
Carr told The Canadian Press.
Those who believe that a rules-based system is in the interests of the
international community will meet to come up with a consensus that we will
then move out into nations who might have been more resistant.
Asked what his message to Americans is in the meantime, Carr replied: That
a rules-based system is good for them too.
The WTO is one of a long list of international organizations and agreements
derided by U.S. President Donald Trump and his protectionist
administration. Trumps top economic adviser, Larry Kudlow, has at times
branded the WTO as ineffective and simply broken
In the case of the WTO, the U.S. has moved beyond hostile rhetoric and
blocked the appointments of new judges to its dispute settlement body,
which is threatening to paralyse the organization and prevent it from
The impasse of the appointment of the appellate body members threatens to
bring the whole dispute settlement system to a halt, says an eight-page
Canadian discussion paper that has been circulated among the 13 invited
The Canadian Press obtained a copy of the paper, which has not been
Carr said Canada is keeping an open mind on finding new ways to settle
international trade disputes.
READ MORE: Canada escalates softwood lumber fight with U.S., asks WTO to
But the main point is, we believe the WTO, reformed and refreshed, is the
best way to re-establish a rules-based system.
Carr said efforts to persuade the Americans to see that point would have
been a lot harder if Canada hadnt preserved dispute resolutions
mechanisms in the newly renegotiated continental free trade pact, renamed
the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement.
You want your major trading partners to admit that you need a dispute
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau told an Edmonton radio station last month
that independent dispute resolution mechanisms, which the U.S. wanted to
scrap, needed to be preserved because Trump doesnt always follow the
rules as theyre laid out.
Canada is inviting Australia, Brazil, Chile, the European Union, Japan,
Kenya, South Korea, Mexico, New Zealand, Norway, Singapore and Switzerland
to two days of talks on the WTO starting Oct. 24 in Ottawa.
The Canadian discussion paper lays out three broad themes for the
discussion: safeguarding and strengthening the dispute settlement system;
improving the efficiency and effectiveness of the WTO monitoring function;
and modernizing trade rules for the 21st Century.
On the latter point, the paper acknowledges that aging trade rules need to
be updated urgently to respond to the needs of the modern global economy,
but notes there is a divergence about the priorities.
The paper doesnt single out the U.S. by name, but it makes clear that
international trading institutions are increasingly fragile.
The challenges facing the multilateral trading system cannot be attributed
to any single cause or any single country, the document says.
However, the combination of disruption and paralysis has begun to erode
respect for rules-based trade, and the institutions that govern it, paving
the way for trade-distorting policies.