Business & Lobbying

Business groups urge Canada, US to resolve border blockade

The nation’s largest business groups are calling on North American leaders to end disruptions at U.S.-Canada border crossings caused by truckers protesting COVID-19 vaccine mandates.

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce, National Association of Manufacturers and Business Roundtable on Thursday night said that the blockades are “adding to the significant supply chain strains” on American companies.

“The business community is rolling up its sleeves to find workarounds and keep facilities up and running, but we are already seeing some production cuts, shift reductions, and temporary plant closures,” the business groups said in a statement. 

“The North American economy relies on our ability to work closely together, including our manufacturing sectors. We need to apply the same spirit of cooperation to tackle this problem.”

For days, truck drivers protesting cross-border vaccine rules have blocked the Ambassador Bridge that connects Ontario with Detroit, which carries about 25 percent of trade between the U.S. and Canada. 

The blockade has forced auto manufacturers to halt their operations, further disrupting an industry that has been unable to keep pace with demand for much of the pandemic due to a shortage of computer chips. Ford, General Motors, Stellantis, Honda and Toyota reduced their operations this week because they couldn’t access auto parts.

Windsor, Ontario officials requested a court injunction Thursday to clear protesters. The Biden administration has urged the Canadian government to use federal powers to end the truck blockade, a move that drew praise from U.S. business groups. 

“We respectfully urge the Canadian government to act swiftly to address the disruption to the flow of trade and its impact on manufacturers and other businesses on both sides of the border,” the business groups said in a statement.

Tags Business Canada COVID-19 economy Freedom Convoy mandate trucker

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