U.S. and Canada Reach an Agreement on Diverting Asylum Seekers

By Michael D. Shear and Ian Austen

“If we’re not working together...both of our securities and frankly economic well-being is at risk," said AS/COA's Eric Farnsworth in The New York Times.

The United States and Canada have reached an agreement that will allow both countries to divert asylum seekers from their borders at a time when migration has surged across the hemisphere, a U.S. official familiar with the agreement said Thursday. [...]

Mr. Biden and Mr. Trudeau are also expected to touch on longstanding disputes between their industries, such as those over the dairy and timber trade. U.S. technology companies have also urged the Biden administration to push back against a proposed digital services tax in Canada, saying that the bulk of revenues would be collected from American firms.

But experts said the meeting would likely take a wider lens on the trade relationship, focusing on how the countries could align their policies to take on larger challenges like climate change, economic and security threats from China, and the war in Ukraine.

“The competition is not within North America, it is without,” Louise Blais, a former Canadian diplomat, said in a virtual panel discussion Wednesday hosted by the Americas Society/Council of the Americas and the Woodrow Wilson Center Canada Institute. [...]

“If we’re not working together in this new world that we face, I think both of our securities and frankly economic well-being is at risk,” Eric Farnsworth, the vice president of the Council of the Americas and the Americas Society, said during the panel discussion Wednesday.

“I think both leaders certainly get that, the governments get it, but sometimes interest group politics intervene.”

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