Statement of the Canada-Texas Chamber of Commerce on COVID-19-Related Border Issues

Statement of the Canada-Texas Chamber of Commerce on COVID-19-Related Border Issues

On March 18, the Governments of Canada and the United States both agreed that the 8,891 kilometre (5,500 mile) border between the two countries would be closed to all but commercial and other essential traffic.  For both countries, this is an extraordinary and unprecedented measure.

Canada’s Deputy Prime Minister, Chrystia Freeland, who also led Canada’s negotiations, in her former role as Global Affairs Minister, for the revised NAFTA (USMCA/CUSMA) agreement, stated “These restrictions will in no way impede trade between Canada and the U.S.,”, which has indeed largely been the case since the measures took effect.

While the current health restrictions are necessary at this time, the CTCC hopes this growing and mutually beneficial exchange can recommence at the earliest safe opportunity

Likewise, in the view of the CTCC, it is absolutely imperative our close trade relationship remain unencumbered during this time. With that in mind, a US proposal, made public on March 25, to send US military troops to the Canadian border, could be seen as an unnecessarily provocative measure against America’s closest ally and without evident motive of any kind.  As Minister Freeland said in a briefing with reporters, “In Canada’s view, this would be an entirely unnecessary step, which we would view as damaging to our relationship.”

As the Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau, stated, “Canada and the United States have the longest un-militarized border in the world and it is very much in both of our interests for it to remain that way.”

Fortunately, on March 26, the US Government stated that all plans to move troops to the Canadian border have been scrapped.

The CTCC applauds that decision and all measures to ensure our relationship remains seamless and harmonious. Our Chamber exists to strengthen and increase not only the sizable commercial and trade relationship between Texas and Canada, but also to foster travel, tourism, study and closer relationships overall between us.