It’s now been a whole month since the suspension of nonessential travel between Canada and the United States.
Despite the number of COVID-19 infections in the U.S. continues to climb at around 30,000 new cases a day, president Donald Trump hinted earlier this week that the border could soon re-open.
Meanwhile, Ontario could hit its peak this week. It is presumed that the number of new infections will decline after the peak.
So, #Summer2020USA after all? Not so fast.
According to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, there is still a “significant amount of time” before restoring traffic between the two countries.
“As we move forward, there will be special thought given to this relationship. But at the same time we know that there is a significant amount of time, still, before we can talk about loosening such restrictions,” Trudeau said at a press conference on Thursday.
So, how long is a ‘significant amount of time’? Who knows! Trudeau’s been historically vague, after all. But in all seriousness, putting a date on such a fragile situation is impossible.
Ontario premier Doug Ford used more direct language: “I don’t want them in Ontario,” Ford said yesterday of Americans crossing the border.
It’s easy to understand why Trump is so keen to restore travel (see: trade) between Canada and the United States. Earlier this week, the IMF predicted the economic damage of the coronavirus pandemic to be, a.k.a. the Great Lockdown, to be the heaviest since the Great Depression. The economy is all Trump has; it’s all he cares about.
Which isn’t to say the issue isn’t important to Canada. Through February, the U.S. imported $49.73 billion worth of goods from Canada. The oil and passenger vehicle industries are hardest hit by the ongoing border closure.
As is Karen, who’d just like to score a couple deals in upstate New York before patio season.