© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: U.S. Commerce Consultant Katherine Tai testifies earlier than the Senate Finance Committee on Capitol Hill in Washington, U.S., Could 12, 2021. Pete Marovich/Pool by way of REUTERS
By David Lawder
WASHINGTON (Reuters) -U.S. Commerce Consultant Katherine Tai mentioned a variety of commerce points with Canadian Commerce Minister Mary Ng on Monday and emphasised the necessity for Canada to implement new North American commerce deal commitments on dairy and e-commerce shipments, her workplace mentioned in a press release.
In a digital assembly on the eve of the primary assembly of the U.S.-Mexico Canada Settlement Free Commerce Fee, Tai additionally raised issues about Canada’s not too long ago proposed digital companies tax, USTR mentioned. The commerce company is readying potential tariffs on six nations whereas worldwide negotiations on the difficulty proceed.
A press release from Canada’s commerce ministry mentioned Ng additionally raised issues about U.S. commerce insurance policies however the two agreed on the necessity to strengthen North American provide chains, collaborate on COVID-19 restoration and implement the USMCA’s labor rights provisions.
These included issues about U.S. “Purchase America” authorities procurement restrictions and an ongoing dispute over U.S. tariffs on Canadian softwood lumber. American house builders and U.S. lawmakers have requested Tai to carry the 9% duties to ease a provide crunch that has despatched lumber costs hovering.
“Minister Ng reiterated that it was in the most effective curiosity of each nations to achieve an settlement on softwood lumber and raised the impacts of photo voltaic safeguards,” the commerce ministry mentioned.
Ng additionally introduced up a dispute over Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer’s order that Canadian pipeline firm Enbridge (NYSE:) shut down a crude pipeline over security issues, a transfer Canada says would violate a 1977 treaty.
The commerce ministry mentioned Ng “famous the significance of the continued secure operation of Line 5” which runs underneath the Straits of Mackinac within the Nice Lakes.
The USMCA commerce deal allowed for improved entry for U.S. dairy farmers to Canada’s extremely protected dairy market. The Trump administration in December mentioned it was difficult Canada’s allocation of tariff-rate quotas for dairy.
The commerce deal additionally raised the “de-minimis” duty-free threshold for small duty-free shipments of products to C$150 from C$20 beforehand, a transfer anticipated to profit U.S. e-commerce corporations similar to Amazon.com (NASDAQ:) and eBay (NASDAQ:)
The assembly of the USMCA Free Commerce Council, which incorporates Tai, Ng and Mexican Economic system Minister Tatiana Clouthier, will even focus on a number of irritants in Mexico’s implementation of the accord, notably on labor rights. Tai has pledged to carry up allegations that labor rights have been denied in a union contract vote at a Basic Motors (NYSE:) truck plant within the central Mexican metropolis of Silao and a union membership drive at an auto components plant within the Texas border metropolis of Matamoros.
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