Parksville Qualicum Beach News

No reason to fear China - MP

There’s nothing particularly new or secret about Ottawa’s latest trade deal with China, says Nanaimo-Alberni MP James Lunney.

Lunney, whose office was picketed with a protest recently against the Canada-China Foreign Investment Promotion and Protection Agreement (FIPPA) said those concerned about the impacts of the proposed deal can rest assured it’s not as scary as some make out.

“The China-Canada FIPPA agreement was tabled in the House of Commons on Sept. 26 and is available to the public and all MPS,” Lunney said. “The NDP and Liberal parties have had four days to debate the issue and curiously they have decided not to.”

Lunney said that since 2006 a total of 14 FIPPAs have been signed with countries such as India, Senegal, Tanzania, Romania and the Czech Republic. As well, negotiations are in progress with Benin, Cameroon, Ghana, Indonesia and Zambia.

“By negotiating FIPPAs with developing nations, Canada is playing a responsible and useful role in helping smaller nations develop the  capacity and a template for trade agreements that promotes responsible development of their own economies.”

Lunney argued the FIPPA agreement with China will provide stronger protection for Canadians investing in China and facilitate the creation of jobs and economic growth in Canada at the same time.

“Canada’s Foreign Investment Act remains in place and any major foreign investment will continue to be subject to analysis to determine if it is in Canada’s best interest,” Lunney said.

Although Canada’s largest trading partner is the United States — to the tune of $689 billion in bilateral trade, Lunney said it’s crucial for the nation to diversify its trading relationships to include other nations as well.

“Diversification of economic opportunity is a great asset in uncertain times,” he said. “We continue to work to expand opportunities for Canadian exporters and job creators.”

Anyone who wants to access the document can find it at: www.international.gc.ca/trade-agreements-accords-commerciaux/agr-acc/fipa-apie/china-text-chine.aspx?lang=en&view=d.

 

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