Where Is the Relationship Going? The View from Canada

  • Richard NimijeanEmail author
Part of the Canada and International Affairs book series (CIAF)


National identity is used to analyze contemporary Canada–US relations from a Canadian perspective. Being a smaller and less powerful partner means that the relationship is always interpreted in terms of the potential loss of policy sovereignty; fears of Americanization influence how Canada approaches the relationship. Since 9/11, American statements that “security trumps trade” challenge Canada as a trading country dependent on staples exports and an integrated cross-border manufacturing sector. The lack of secure access to the American market remains paramount in the minds of Canadian decision-makers, as any economic downturn associated with the loss of this market would produce political calamity. Appeals to sovereignty and national identity, once used in the fight against free trade and closer ties with the United States, are now used to promote closer ties with the United States through a progressive trade agenda that will, according to the government, protect and promote Canadian values and interests. This approach helps us understand the evolving shared border and the political priority of communicating policy autonomy in the context of nurturing a highly integrated cross-border relationship.


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Carleton UniversityOttawaCanada

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