This week, Chief Executive of CANZUK International, James Skinner, spoke with TV Ontario about the developments of free movement, free trade and foreign policy between Canada, Australia, New Zealand and the United Kingdom, and the relationship between these nations and the Commonwealth…
Speaking with Steve Paikin for “The Agenda”, Skinner explained what CANZUK International advocates for and the benefits of the CANZUK nations in cooperating for mutual policy initiatives:
“What we’re advocating is for Canada, Australia, New Zealand and the United Kingdom to form closer economic, social and diplomatic ties. Our primary goal is free movement for citizens between these four countries, based on the current free movement protocols that currently exist between Australia and New Zealand under the Trans-Tasman Travel Agreement. What we would then do is expand free trade, as combined free trade from these four countries would be estimated 3.5 trillion, and we would also work towards security developments through the Five-Eyes Intelligence Alliance that currently exists between these four countries and the United States of America, and also with the development of foreign policy as well.”
When asked about the barriers in place to achieving CANZUK International’s objectives, Skinner responded:
“Our primary objective is freedom of movement, and the barriers are obviously the arduous immigration controls between the four countries. We get thousands of emails every single week, pretty much, from people who have a spouse, say, a Canadian who has an Australian spouse, and they cant live in Australia with their spouse or their children because the immigration controls are too crazy. I see it myself when I go back to London every six months for business, family and friends, and I find it bizarre that citizens of member EU countries can go straight through in one, single, fast track line but citizens of Canada, Australia and New Zealand have to queue up in a separate line even though they share the same language and culture as us. To me, it is kind of bizarre; we share far more with these countries than we do with the European Union, so there are plenty of barriers in place that CANZUK International wants to break down and we’re committed to doing so, and hopefully, getting majority (if not all) of these barriers broken by 2020”
The panel interview, which aired on Monday, also discussed concerns regarding the exclusion of other Commonwealth members from a CANZUK initiative, and whether CANZUK International’s proposals were solely for free movement and free trade, or whether plans were being drawn up for closer political integration as seen within the European Union.
The interview came a few days after Canadian Conservative leadership hopeful, Erin O’Toole, endorsed CANZUK free movement and free trade via his campaign website, demonstrating huge support and discussion within Canada about the benefits of CANZUK International’s proposals.
For more information about CANZUK International’s proposals and future televised appearances, please contact us.
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