Sponsor
Home Public Policy International Trade

International Trade

Canadians value free trade. A surprise development in the 21 century. Not too long ago we fought elections on free trade. Now it is part of our cultural attitude.

A 2017 global Ipsos poll found that Canada is the 8th most supportive of free trade of 24 countries polled. Fully 89% either strongly agree (56%) or somewhat agree (33%) that “Free trade is beneficial for my country’s economy.”

Historical tracking shows that after NAFTA came into force support for the agreement rose slowly. It reached as high as 60% in 1994. Later surveys would show even more support. Free trade became part of the status quo. None of the major parties or provincial governments have made it a political issue so Canadians were left with little reason to move off their support for free trade.

The U.S. is our main trade partner and so NAFTA and its successor dominate polls. Trade with our nations is on the agenda and Canadians are supportive.

A country of free-traders?

Trump's threat to cancel NAFTA and the series of negotiations that the threat spurred, has been one of the most important issues facing Canada. In 2017, it was the most polled issue  in 2017 and...

International Trade Involvement is Net Positive but 1 in 4 have Protectionist Orientation

A recent Global Attitudes Survey 2016 by the Pew Research Center provides an interesting window into how Canadians see trade independent of specific agreements or specific trade agreements. Canadians are trade positive, in part because political...

Canadians Increasingly Believe NAFTA Benefits Canada [Angus Reid Institute]

As Canada is about to impose retaliatory tariffs on U.S. goods, it is interesting that Canadians have become more positive about the role of NAFTA in Canada. More than half (56%) now think the...

Trudeau’s China Trade Mission | A Skeptical 2015 Public

Even back in 2015, Canadians largely understood that China had surpassed the United States as a leading economic power. It is no surprise then the Canadian Government would be looking to China, especially with...