Upcoming Engagements to Advance the Province’s Trade and Economic Interests
Premier Kathleen Wynne is supporting Ontario workers and businesses by promoting free trade and increased partnership between Ontario and the U.S.
Following a successful mission to Washington, D.C., and New York to underscore Ontario’s significant ties to the U.S. and support for free trade, Premier Wynne will continue that advocacy with a series of engagements on both sides of the border.
In the coming weeks, Premier Wynne will continue to hear from Ontario workers and business leaders concerned about the potential impact of NAFTA renegotiations and other economic challenges. Key events include:
- This Thursday, February 15, Premier Wynne will host a Town Hall in Windsor. Moderated by Ken Lewenza, former President of the Canadian Auto Workers Union, the Premier will take questions from the public on a wide range of topics, including concerns about the impact of Canada’s decision to sign the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CP-TPP), NAFTA negotiations and the current state of Ontario’s auto industry
- The following day, Premier Wynne will attend the Canadian International AutoShow at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre. The Premier will highlight Ontario’s position as a leader in the automotive sector and address the impact of trade negotiations on this critical industry
- On February 22, the Premier will kick off the Toronto Region Board of Trade Party Leaders Series with a discussion of Ontario’s economic competitiveness and the province’s plans to continue working alongside partners in the U.S. to encourage economic growth and create more fairness and opportunity for everyone
- On February 23-24, Premier Wynne will return to Washington to attend the National Governors Association Winter Meeting. While in Washington, the Premier will meet with U.S. governors to drive home the importance of maintaining free trade and explore opportunities for further economic partnerships with the U.S. — particularly with the Great Lakes states.
These upcoming events build on the Premier’s extensive U.S. engagement efforts to date. Premier Wynne has had productive discussions with 33 governors over the past year that have strengthened Ontario’s relationships with key states and confirmed a broad consensus among U.S. state leaders about the importance of free trade to our shared prosperity.
Ontario is also exploring new opportunities to collaborate with individual states in order to drive more growth and opportunities in a period of economic change. The province has a strong track record of productive partnership with U.S. states, such as the 2016 and 2017 Memoranda of Understanding (MOU) with Michigan designed to promote innovation and enhance the automotive sector’s competitiveness. This collaboration has already resulted in North America’s first national, cross-border automated vehicle test drive through Southern Ontario and Michigan, promoting innovation in the auto sector and driving economic growth.
Promoting trade and partnership while protecting Ontario’s economic interests is part of Ontario’s plan to create fairness and opportunity during this period of rapid economic change. The plan includes a higher minimum wage and better working conditions, free tuition for hundreds of thousands of students, easier access to affordable child care, and free prescription drugs for everyone under 25 through the biggest expansion of medicare in a generation.
- Every day, more than $1 billion in goods are traded between Ontario and the U.S. In 2017, two-way trade between Ontario and the U.S. totaled nearly $400 billion.
- The economic output of the Great Lakes-St. Lawrence region totals $8 trillion — one-third of all U.S.-Canada economic activity.
- In 2016, Ontario and Michigan together accounted for 26 per cent of North American vehicle production.
“I know that many people across the province are feeling uncertain about their futures. My priority is to stand up for everyone who calls Ontario home. I will keep listening to your concerns and fighting on your behalf — working closely with our partners in the U.S. and across Canada to find new ways to collaborate and protect the millions of jobs here in Ontario, and across North America, that rely on our integrated supply chains, free trade and strong cross-border relationships. I know from meeting with U.S. leaders that they recognize the value of our integrated partnership, and I am confident that by working together we will find a way forward.”
— Kathleen Wynne, Premier of Ontario