China may use Canada as 'Trojan horse' into US market
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BY DANNY LAM (Danny Lam is a research associate at the University of Waterloo in Ontario. His research includes work on China, NAFTA and defense issues)
NAFTA is not just a free trade agreement between Canada, Mexico and the U.S. The agreement is premised on and embedded in the post war U.S. security architecture. Until the end of the Cold War, Canada was a reliable ally that met defense and security commitments to the U.S. and played a major role in international peace and security.
Canada shared with the U.S. a common perception of security threats and could be reliably counted on to uphold and defend allied interests.
Canada of 2017, however, has sharply diverged from the U.S. foreign policy toward the People's Republic of China (PRC) and Northeast Asia in general. The U.S. have become gravely concerned with the PRC's challenge to the rules-based international order like the "sea grab" of the South China Sea in violation of UNCLOS, the PRC arms buildup and economic and military support of regimes like North Korea (DPRK) that pose an existential threat to the U.S.
Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau's Liberals articulated a foreign and defense policy in June 2017 that sees no military threat from the PRC and virtually ignores North Korea's nuclear missile threat to North America, including Canada.
Combined with Canadian defense spending of 1 percent of GDP and no credible signs of improvement, it is fair to say that Canadians no longer share a common threat perception with the U.S. for East Asia and particularly China. To wit: The Trump administration is "done talking about North Korea" and actively considering alternatives but Canada is not materially contributing to military options.
Disagreement between Canada and the U.S. on the PRC military threat extends into the economic sphere, where the Liberal regime prioritized securing a free trade deal with the PRC with little concern as to the predatory behavior by PRC firms and national security concerns.
U.S. allies like Australia and New Zealand have entered into free trade deals with the PRC with only limited security concerns. But those deals are, compared to the PRC demands from Canada, limited, tightly-circumscribed agreements that generally do not impinge on key allied sovereignty and security interests. By contrast, PRC's demands on Canada are breathtaking for their scale and scope. What do the PRC want from Canada?
Geopolitically, the PRC aims to detach Canada from its alliance with the U.S. and other allies and secure Canada's acquiescence to the PRC aggression against neighboring states like South Korea, Japan, the Philippines, Vietnam, India, the South China Sea, etc. PRC routinely tightly link foreign policy with trade to punish countries.
PRC expressed its opposition to ...
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