Glacier FarmMedia COVID-19 & the Farm

Global Markets: Canada asks for ‘Buy American’ exemption

WINNIPEG, Jan. 26 (MarketsFarm) – The following is a glance at the news moving markets in Canada and globally.

– Canada’s Deputy Prime Minister Chrystia Freeland told CBC on Monday both Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and United States President Joe Biden have discussed the possibility of Canada being exempt from Biden’s newly-implemented “Buy American” provision. “When it comes to buy America, and protectionism from the U.S. overall, this is not a new thing for any Canadian government and I can tell you it is not a new thing for our government. It is something we know how to deal with, we know how to push back on,” Freeland said. One of the directives of “Buy American” is to increase the amount of American content a government project needs to qualify as “Made in America.” According to a 2019 U.S. government report, Canadian firms received US$674 million out of the US$290 billion awarded in contracts by the U.S. government in 2015.

– European members of the World Economic Forum urged pharmaceutical companies yesterday to meet their goals in providing nations with sufficient amounts of the COVID-19 vaccine. The rollout has been fraught with supply chain breakdowns and delays all over the world. One member suggested the European Union take AstraZeneca to court for breach of supply contracts if it did not honour its distribution targets. “The possibility should be evaluated, and it should be coordinated among the EU countries,” Latvia’s foreign affairs minister Edgars Rinkevics told Reuters.

– Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte resigned from his position yesterday after a failed attempt to form a governing coalition. Conte, an independent, lost his majority last week when the liberal Italia Viva party left the coalition over his handling of the coronavirus and a recession. President Sergio Mattarella will either look for another PM, find other parties to form a coalition or call an election two years ahead of schedule.

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