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Red tape at the border key small business issue ahead of Obama, Nieto visit

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Toronto, June 29, 2016 – With free trade at the top of the agenda for the Three Amigos Summit in Ottawa this week, the Canadian Federation of Independent Business (CFIB) is encouraging Prime Minister Trudeau to focus on reducing red tape at the border.

“In a difficult economy, cross-border trade has the potential to be a big boost for small business,” said Corinne Pohlmann, CFIB senior vice-president, national affairs and partnerships. “In order to stimulate that trade, we need to see meaningful action taken to eliminate unfair and costly rules at the border.”

One third of Canadian small businesses are thinking twice about cross-border trade with the United States due to red tape and overly complicated border processes. CFIB has been working closely with the Canada Border Services Agency and its American counterpart to highlight the unique barriers smaller businesses face when it comes to cross-border trade, including lengthy wait-times, customer service concerns and low awareness of trade programs for small and medium-sized businesses.

“We’re encouraged by the general support for free trade the leaders are showing, but red tape is putting the benefits of free trade out of reach for many small businesses,” added Pohlmann. “We hope that Prime Minister Trudeau, President Obama and President Nieto will take steps to improve cross-border trade for all businesses by making red-tape-free-trade a priority.”

To arrange an interview with Corinne Pohlmann, please contact Ryan Mallough at 416-222-8022, 647-464-2814 or [email protected]

CFIB is Canada’s largest association of small- and medium-sized businesses with 109,000 members across every sector and region.