ontario news watch

Conservatives would renegotiate free trade deal with Ukraine, says MP James Bezan

OTTAWA — A Tory member of Parliament says a future Conservative government would renegotiate Canada’s trade deal with Ukraine. 

Manitoba MP James Bezan says his government would ensure the agreement contains no mention of carbon pricing — and that no other trade deals do either.

He made the comments on a Ukrainian TV network last week, aired after the Tories voted against legislation to implement an updated Canada-Ukraine free trade deal. 

Ukrainian groups expressed disappointment over the vote and Liberals accused the party of mimicking right-wing politicians in the U.S. who want to reduce aid to Ukraine.

Bezan told the network the reference to carbon pricing was a “poison pill” Tories can’t support, adding they would also change the deal by adding insurance provisions.

Conservative Leader Pierre Poilievre said last week his party wouldn’t honour what he called a “carbon tax amendment,” but stopped short of outlining what he planned to do about the deal. 

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Feb. 13, 2024. 

The Canadian Press