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Minister Hajdu hosts NAFTA roundtable with labour representatives

OTTAWA, Dec. 8, 2017 /CNW/ - The Government of Canada is committed to modernizing and updating the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) in a way that helps all Canadians share in the benefits of trade. That's why the Government is consulting with Canadians from all sectors and backgrounds as tri-lateral negotiations on NAFTA between Canada, the United States and Mexico continue.
Today, the Honourable Patty Hajdu, Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Labour, met with representatives from the labour movement, who represent Canadian workers, to hear their views on the modernization of NAFTA. Organized labour is critical to a strong middle class and to creating the kind of economic growth that benefits everyone.
As we work constructively to modernize NAFTA, Canada is seeking to include commitments to ratify and implement the fundamental conventions of the International Labour Organization, address gender-based discrimination, and protect unions and the bargaining process.
"NAFTA supports millions of middle class jobs in Canada, Mexico, and the United States. Its modernization is an opportunity to make a good agreement even better by integrating stronger labour provisions that provide better protections for workers and help businesses thrive in Canada and throughout North America."‎
– The Honourable Patty Hajdu, Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Labour
"A strong, modern and comprehensive NAFTA allows North America to maintain its competitiveness in an increasingly complex and connected global marketplace. We are working hard to ensure the new agreement provides a solid framework to create jobs, economic growth and opportunity."
– Lieutenant-General (Retired) the Hon. Andrew Leslie, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Foreign Affairs
Quick Facts
• NAFTA supports growth, innovation and well-paying jobs in Canada, Mexico and the United States. The agreement paved the way for unprecedented economic integration between partners. In 2016, trilateral trade reached nearly USD$ 1 trillion – more than a three-fold increase since 1993.
• The Government has been listening to Canadians from across the country and from all sectors and backgrounds to assess what matters to them and to advance Canada's interests during NAFTA negotiations. Consultations and engagement will continue as negotiations move forward.
• Canada's proposed labour chapter includes a higher level of obligations than previous agreements, such as the North American Agreement on Labour Cooperation (NAALC) and the Canada-European Union Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA).
Associated Links
Consulting Canadians on the renegotiation of NAFTA with the United States and Mexico
NAFTA: A free trade success story
International Labour Organization
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SOURCE Employment and Social Development Canada

Matt Pascuzzo,     12/8/2017


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