Free trade, not ‘cartels’: Bernier

Canada should put its dairy, poultry and egg “cartels” on the table in trade talks with the United States in exchange for dropping protectionist measures such as the softwood lumber tariff, Conservative Party leadership candidate Maxime Bernier says.

In his latest move to renegotiate NAFTA, U.S. President Donald Trump has imposed duties of up to 24% on Canadian softwood lumber.

If Wisconsin dairy farmers want access to the Canadian market, they should know it’s a two-way street, said Bernier.

It makes sense to phase out the supply management systems in Canada that keep the price of milk and other products artificially high, he said.

“But I will ask (Trump) at the same time, ‘Why do you want to impose a tariff on our softwood lumber?’ … It is not fair for American consumers who want to build a new house — they will have to pay $1,000 more,” Bernier told the Toronto Sun Tuesday.