U. S. Outsourcing Millions Of Jobs
Date: Thursday, October 20 2005
By Charles Campbell
Published: October 19, 2005
In Canada, the effect of global trade on Canadian jobs has been an issue for decades. We are a trading nation, and our economic success depends greatly on our ability to trade internationally. We depend in particular on the U.S., which buys 85 percent of our exports.
So we've negotiated trade deals: for more than 30 years, the Auto Pact ensured that we shared in the production of the cars we drive. Free trade agreements involving the U.S., and then Mexico, have sought to protect our access to the U.S., for good and ill.
Now protectionist sentiment is welling up in the U.S., as the country's power erodes. America is vulnerable at home, ineffectual in Iraq, and worried about booming economies in China and India.
Some U.S. industries - from call centres to film production - have come to Canada. However, in a speech to a business forum organized by the Vancouver Airport Authority, Federal Industry Minister David Emerson said U.S. protectionism makes his blood run cold. "If investments are systematically and continuously biased toward the United States because of border risk, we've got some big, big problems in Canada."
Yet much U.S. apprehension is a result of U.S. companies shipping U.S. jobs outside the country. Emerson's speech didn't touch on the fact that in an increasingly global economy, where corporations are able to subvert the rules we make to protect stable livelihoods for ordinary people, U.S. protectionism is just one element in the equation.
[Proofreader's note: this article was edited for spelling and typos on October 20, 2005]