Roundup: 2018 NAFTA hopes, Canada’s auto industry, and Canadians’ new love for air power

Surveying National Support for the NAFTA Agreement and Reforms

In a survey of more than 1,000 Canadians in May, 67 per cent of Canadians expressed support for NAFTA, as well as for the broad package of changes that Ottawa and Washington agreed to last month.

Bloomberg’s Cameron Van Til reports the poll found 64 per cent of respondents agreed with the broad, four-year deal between the United States, Canada and Mexico.

“In this era of both U.S. and Canadian election cycles, support for the deal is up from 60 per cent in July 2016, and 60 per cent in May 2016,” Kavanagh said.

There is skepticism of Canada’s ability to reform NAFTA, according to the poll. However, there’s a shift in the research by the public opinion firm from a survey taken in January, 2017, which was 44 per cent in favour of NAFTA, and 34 per cent in favour of changing it.

Breaking Down Canada’s Fast-Growing Motoring Industry

In its Auto Outlook 2018, a report published in April by the Conference Board of Canada, the Canada’s second largest think tank found that the country’s auto-manufacturing sector was expected to expand by a double-digit rate this year, with 76 per cent of the country’s manufacturing capacity in use.

In terms of employment, the 2017 report estimated more than 235,000 jobs in the sector. Within the sector, Ontario recorded the largest contribution, according to the report.

Bloomberg’s Vanessa Korte looks at how the Toronto-based company is taking advantage of Canada’s unique climate and its new air power.

Landmark Challenges and Prospects For Canada’s Stabilizing Pivot to Solar

The Canadian Solar Industries Association released its 2018 Annual Industry Report earlier this week, identifying “emerging industry challenges” and “huge opportunities” for Canada’s solar industry.

Kerry-Ann Paulsen covers the trends in this report for the National Post. She also looks at the problem solar panel inventors face with U.S. tariffs and what could happen to the industry and Canada as a result.

B.C. Voters Top Elections 2018 Local Survey

Election observers will be evaluating the province’s election results in large part by their outcome in areas such as turnout, voter turnout and overall popularity of candidates. One smart local statistician has looked into these three factors and has found some interesting numbers.

The study, done by B.C. political scientist Rodney Whitlock, found it was likely that the number of people who showed up to vote would determine the makeup of the provincial legislature. Whitlock calls these the “Big Three.”

He also looked at the vote counting process and found “extremely optimistic” results for the NDP. So far, he says “the NDP looks poised to take over the capital and probably is not going to lose an election.” Whitlock is the math guy for the Liberal party and has done this number crunching before.

Still, he’s not ruling out a conservative win. He looks at all the time spent in school and how the Liberals polled well in rural areas but not in urban areas.

“The NDP had a good lead right from the beginning. And the most reliable polling body was the one on the ground in the inner cities,” he says.

To make the research a little more interesting, he’s also using Facebook “Likes” to gauge the popularity of each party. He’s found that according to his latest research, the Liberals have an 82.56 per cent “Likes” and the NDP has an 81.37 per cent “Likes.” The Green Party has a rating of only 11.1 per cent.

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