CANADA & US - Saskatchewan's Premier says, if the United States adopts protectionist measures, it will be important for Canada develop friendships and alliances at the centre of the US federal administration and within the state capitals, reports Bruce Cochrane.
As part of Canada Day at the Capitol organized by the Consulate General of Canada in Minneapolis, Saskatchewan's Premier is travelling to Des Moines this week, Iowa's capital, to promote the critical importance of Canada's and Saskatchewan's trade relationships with the United States.
Premier Brad Wall says the trip comes as a result of discussions he had with Prime Minister Trudeau and his offer of Saskatchewan's assistance in engaging with the United States at the national and state levels.
We have had over the past number of years, not a permanent office like some provinces in Washington, but we have a representative.
Our representative happened to have very direct ties into some of the transition team that was working in the administration change as well as good contacts on both sides of the isle in the congress.
I just offered if we can be any help we would want to do that.
There after the Prime Minister said there was a day planned in Iowa that he was asking me to attend.
I'll speak to the State Senate and the State House in Iowa and then there's a large round table of agricultural businesses, leaders, people involved in business in Iowa.
We do over 350 million dollars a year worth of trade with that state.
They actually have a small trade surplus.
Part of my point in Iowa and when we're in Washington will be to point out that 35 U.S. states have Canada as their number one market.
If we're going to start to see protectionist measures in the US we need to build alliances from the centre, from the federal government of the US from the administration.
We need to build allies and friends in the State capitals because those states will know which of them, which of the 35 have Canada as their number one export market of all the countries of the world and will want to preserve it.
Premier Wall says it's important for all of Canada's premiers, federal officials and business representatives to accept opportunities to engage with their US counterparts and he's happy to represent Canada at this event.
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