Published: Sat, July 21, 2018
Worldwide | By Myra Stephens

Winners, losers from the federal cabinet shuffle

Winners, losers from the federal cabinet shuffle

The Winnipeg MP, who previously led the outward-looking Business Council of Manitoba, is taking on the job of Canada's top travelling salesman as the country chases a goal it has pursued in fits and starts for 45 years: diversifying its trading relationship beyond an undue reliance on the United States.

Champagne's move will have little immediate impact on Canadian trade policy, which is dominated by the possibility of USA auto tariffs and the future of the North American Free Trade Agreement.

Other provincial elections on the horizon - Quebec this fall and Alberta next spring - could produce governmental changes that create new challenges for the Trudeau government. It has always been an aim of Canadian governments to broaden the list of places to which we export, and to diversify the list of goods and services we make available.

Jim Carr - The Manitoba MP's move from natural resources to global trade comes at a time when Canada desperately needs to find new trading partners given the uncertainty around NAFTA and as the Canada-EU trade deal faces increasing resistance across the Atlantic.

Five Liberal MPs have been promoted to cabinet for the first time.

Former Toronto police chief Bill Blair is being appointed Minister of Border Security and Organized Crime Reduction.

Mary Ng and Bill Blair - Ng's star is rising, as the Toronto MP becomes minister of small business just over a year after being elected to Parliament in a byelection. The Toronto-area MP was an adviser to Trudeau before her byelection win past year.

Montreal MP Pablo Rodriguez has also been named minister of heritage and multiculturalism, replacing Mélanie Joly who takes on tourism, official languages and La Francophonie. Jonathan Wilkinson will deal with the issues of fisheries and oceans and will take the post of Minister of the coast guard.

Yet the prime minister's refusal to comment on the Trump-Putin meeting, despite Canada's strong views on Russian Federation, highlights the difficulty he continues to face when it comes to the USA president, says University of Ottawa professor Roland Paris, who served as Trudeau's first foreign-policy adviser.

Mandate letters for the new ministers are expected later this summer. His appointment as infrastructure minister is instead being viewed as a lateral move at best given that Sohi had already done much of the heavy lifting on the file.

According to a statement by the Prime Minister's office, "Sohi will support Canada's important resource industries and help them innovate to support long-term economic growth and export to new markets around the world".

"Canada has been unequivocal in our condemnation of Vladimir Putin and Russia", Trudeau said in response to a reporter's question before listing a host of Russian actions under Putin's watch that Canada has opposed.

Those who are in the Federal Cabinet key positions continue to remain on them - we are talking about the Minister for environmental protection Katherine McKenna, the foreign Minister of Christ, Freeland, Minister of Finance bill Morneau, the Minister of public safety Ralph Goodale, the Minister of innovation Navdeep Baines and defense Minister Hargita the Sajjan.

Conservative deputy leader Lisa Raitt said Trudeau's shuffle highlights areas where the government has failed to deliver on its promises.

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