Canada: Policy toward China

Written by  //  July 30, 2008  //  Canada, China, Economy, Environment & Energy, Foreign Policy, Globalization, Trade & Tariffs  //  Comments Off on Canada: Policy toward China

July 30
Canada’s forestry industry is missing the boat on China
Jason (Guangyu) Wang, Canadian International Council
(The Gazette) Today’s China has a ravenous appetite for imported wood that knows no bounds. But here, our wood associations and governments have, while spending considerable sums on creating a united market for Canadian wood there, missed the basics taught in Business 101 courses: Know your customer’s needs.
Almost all forest products manufacturing in Canada has focused on the ever more efficient processing of structural lumber for the U.S., not on what is in primary demand in China. The Chinese require large amounts of appearance-grade wood for interior decoration, doors, window frames, furniture and outside landscaping.
March 28
A report by Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce World Markets says that countries like Canada and the U.S. may start imposing a “carbon tariff” on China and other developing nations
which are major producers of the greenhouse gases that cause global warming. The report says that China, India and other developing nations have expanded their economies so massively that they now surpass the 30 member states of the Organization of Economic Co-operation and Development in carbon dioxide emissions. The Canadian bank’s document says that as OECD countries impose greater economic sacrifices on themselves to check greenhouse gases, tolerance of the lack of such sacrifices on the part of its trading partners “will diminish dramatically.” The report says China has now surpassed the U.S. as the top polluter, mainly because of its reliance on heavily polluting coal.
Carbon tariff may bring firms home
(Globe & Mail) Manufacturers may return to North America to capitalize on cleaner energy, report says
CALGARY — Imposing carbon tariffs on emerging economies with low manufacturing costs and high greenhouse gas emissions could drive some manufacturers back to Western countries, according to two economists.
Jeff Rubin, chief strategist and economist at CIBC World Markets, thinks such tariffs could emerge quickly. Countries in Europe are already becoming publicly intolerant of emissions elsewhere and the next president of the United States is expected to institute a cap on greenhouse gas emissions alongside the trading of carbon credits.
“It’s sooner than later,” Mr. Rubin said in an interview yesterday after the release of a report titled Coming Home, which was co-written with CIBC economist Benjamin Tal.
March 18
Canada subtly signalling change of policy toward China
(Globe and Mail) OTTAWA — The government of Prime Minister Stephen Harper has begun using what experts are calling “subtle but meaningful” shifts in diplomatic language in an effort to improve relations with China – changes that have drawn approval from Beijing.
Foreign Minister Maxime Bernier delivered a speech to Asian ambassadors behind closed doors in Ottawa last Wednesday, where he asserted, in unusually unqualified terms, Canada’s support for a “one-China policy.”
“We recognize the Government of the People’s Republic of China as the sole legitimate government of China,” Mr. Bernier said, according to a text of his speech.
“This remains the core of our China policy. It guides our bilateral relationship with the PRC. It informs our position on Tibet. And it provides a framework that supports peace and security in the Taiwan Strait.”
Mr. Bernier also said Canada was concerned that the March 22 referendum on Taiwan joining the United Nations “needlessly escalates tensions across the Strait.”
On Thursday, when a backbench Conservative MP asked a planted question in the House of Commons about protests in Tibet, Mr. Bernier prefaced his expression of concern with an unusual preamble: “Canada has a one-China policy.”

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