Majority of U.S. firms say free trade with Canada helps their economy
More than one in two American businesses say the United States is better off because of free trade with Canada, with particularly strong support in the northeastern U.S., according to a new poll.
Regionally speaking, surveyed businesses in the northeastern United States had the most positive impression of free trade with Canada, with 59 per cent saying the U.S. economy is better off because of it. Nearly 57 per cent of surveyed businesses in the southern United States had a positive impression of free trade with their northern neighbour, followed by the Western United States at 52 per cent and Midwest at 46 per cent.
The United States is expected to release its official NAFTA negotiating objectives on Monday. Canadian officials say talks could start within days, or at most weeks, of Aug. 16 – the first day that U.S. President Donald Trump’s administration is legally allowed to begin NAFTA discussions.
“The key takeaway here is that American businesses see trade with Canada as an opportunity. It’s not a threat,” pollster Nik Nanos said in an interview.
“When we asked American businesses about the benefits of trade with Canada specifically, a majority see it as a net positive and that this is exceptionally so for any businesses located in the northeastern United States, which is part of the economic heart of the U.S.”