Tense Canada-China Relations Could be an Issue for Farmers

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says Canada will not be intimidated by China following tit-for-tat diplomatic expulsions by Ottawa and Beijing.

Ottawa expelled Chinese diplomat Zhao Wei on Monday over allegations related to foreign interference, and hours later, China asked a Canadian diplomat in Shanghai to leave by Saturday in response to what it called Ottawa’s “unreasonable actions.”

Some fear the latest flare-up could have economic repercussions for Canada.

Chinese imports of Canadian goods rose 16 per cent last year to a record of $100 billion, and China is Canada’s second-biggest trading partner after the U.S.

Last year, Beijing lifted a three-year ban on imports of canola, Canada’s largest crop, from trading companies Richardson International and Viterra.

China is also a major importer of Canadian potash and wheat.

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