TPP … I hate acronyms,” exclaimed a rather testy and annoyed Saskatchewan Minister of Finance to you his ever faithful, charming and loyal Deputy Minister.
“The Minister of the Economy claims she can’t make it to the next Cabinet meeting. Something about an international meeting of trade Ministers at a five star hotel in some remote resort that will take her three days to get to. Tough to take, eh?
“So guess what she wants me to do? She wants me to make the recommendation to Cabinet as to whether Saskatchewan should support the TPP, which I gather means Trans-Pacific Partnership. But fill me in my good Deputy.
Tell me all about why freer trade is important (or is it).
What are the objections to freer trade?
tell me about the other big trade agreements has Canada entered into?
Tell me about this TPP thing – what is it,
who is involved,
who negotiated it,
what does it entail from an economic perspective. Should we be concerned about any moral issues associated with the agreement?
Are there many downsides to the agreement?
Why isn’t China part of the partnership?
“Then give me the options for Cabinet and the advantages and disadvantages of each – please put them in a table so I can sort them out easily. And, finally give me a firm recommendation. You know I hate it when you get wishy- washy on me. Be sure to back up things with evidence like facts and data. Keep the note pithy.
“Now let me get back to my travel arrangements for the next meeting of provincial Ministers of Finance. I gather we get to go to Jake’s Corner which is somewhere in the Yukon that no-one knows or cares about … great … so much fun being a Finance Minister, eh?
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