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How can Canada trade with the world’s second-biggest economy without getting burned or selling out its values? The first step is to have a serious national conversation about it, PPF President and CEO Edward Greenspon tells Newstalk770 in Calgary.
Is China a friend or a foe? That’s the question Danielle Smith, host at Calgary’s Newstalk770, had for Public Policy Forum president and CEO Ed Greenspon on her July 6 show. It’s a question many Canadians have. For Greenspon, co-chair of the new Consultative Forum on China, the answer lies in having a serious and balanced national conversation about how we can engage the Asian giant in a way that Canadians can accept. Because we simply can’t ignore it: China is already our second-biggest trading partner, it has the world’s second-largest economy, and it’s growing even faster than the United States’ economy. And Canada needs to diversify as its once-stable access to the American market becomes increasingly precarious. But it’s not easy: China is not a democracy, nor does it operate like Canada’s traditional free-trade partners.
“I think we need to know what our relationship is with China. What is in Canada’s interests?” Greenspon said. “Canada’s economy only grows if it trades, and Asia is the fastest-growing part of the world. What is our strategy?”