Export slowdown is biggest risk to Canada, economist says

The following is excerpted from a 20  November 2013 news release by Financial Post.

“For much of the past decade, the underlying weakness in Canadian export volumes, productivity and manufacturing was papered over by the boom in commodity prices,” says Mr. Porter in a report, titled Canada’s Biggest Challenge.

“With prices drifting steadily lower since the spring of 2011, it seems safe to conclude that commodities are not going to bail us out this time,” he says.

“The weak export picture is part of the bigger package of listless productivity, sluggish income growth, and a fading manufacturing sector.”

Those concerns are shared by others.

“They validate what trade-union economists have been saying for years: The overvalued exchange rate has hammered manufacturing and exports without providing the promised productivity boost,” says United Steelworkers economist Erin Weir.

“The free-trade deals that Canada has signed in recent years have not increased exports or productivity.”

To view this article in its entirety please visit this link here.

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