07 February 2016

Christy Clark's disingenuous comments on the TPP

B.C. Premier Christy Clark is a very big fan of the proposed Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) Agreement—in her words, a "100 per cent" supporter. In a comment on CBC Radio's The House, the premier stated, "We do 60 per cent of our trade with TPP countries in British Columbia, if we are not signed on to that deal we are going to be shut out," sounding as if without the agreement her province would face economic Armageddon.

A quick check of the facts, however, suggests another story. B.C. did indeed do 63 per cent of its export trade with TPP nations in 2015, but the great part of it was with the United States (52 per cent) and we already have a comprehensive trade agreement—the NAFTA—with the U.S. Only 12 per cent of B.C.'s exports go to other TPP nations, almost entirely to Japan. Potentially losing a portion of 12 per cent could hardly be described as "shut out."

The province's second biggest trading partner is China (17 per cent) which, of course, is not party to the agreement.

Ms. Clark's hyperbole is not, I hope, typical of arguments in favour of the TPP although, as I discussed in my previous post, the agreement appears to be a great deal less than what its proponents would have us believe.

1 comment:

  1. I am always amazed that politicians like Clark do not know or do and don't care about the fundamental Neoliberal nature of the TPP. To call it a trade deal, is like calling the bible a book of knowledge. The violation of Canadians rights and the destroying of our Canadian sovereignty if this agreement is ratified does not seem to phase her. The ISDS clause alone completely bypasses our Charter of Rights and Freedom, which makes the whole agreement unconstitutional.She's either ignorant and doesn't know what this deal entails, or she does and doesn't care. Someone should sit this woman down and explain to her the facts about the TPP, then she doesn't have to keep making a fool of herself by calling it a trade deal.