Premier says meetings with New England governors important amid trade tensions

Premier says meetings with New England governors important amid trade tensions

Premier Wade MacLauchlan said the annual meeting between premiers of Eastern Canadian provinces and New England governors earlier this week in Vermont was about making sure everyone was on "the same page."

MacLauchlan said NAFTA negotiations, along with tariffs recently imposed by Canada and the U.S., have created uncertainty.

"I'd say there's an uneasiness ... or a sense that this is a strange period in our relationship," said MacLauchlan.

That relationship, MacLauchlan said, sees $2 billion "a day going back and forth across the border" between the two countries.

MacLauchlan said the food, pharmaceutical and aerospace industries are the Island's biggest when it comes to U.S. trade.

He said the role of government is to help P.E.I. businesses navigate the tense trade situation developing between the two countries.

'Offset or mitigate any concerns'

"Our commitment as a government is to work with our firms to ensure that we offset or mitigate any concerns that they have and continue to grow," said MacLauchlan.

The annual meetings began in 1973, with last year's meeting happening in P.E.I.

Next year, the group will meet in New Brunswick.