Despite the tough sanctions the Trudeau administration has imposed on Vladimir Putin’s Russia since invading Ukraine last February, some trade between Canada and Russia is still going on.
And among the ten Canadian provinces that last June won the sad prize of most “active” province in international trade with invader Putin’s Russia?
Just by asking the question, you probably guessed that this is Quebec, unfortunately!
Bizarre as it may seem, Quebec imported $31 million worth of goods from Russia last June. That represents 70% of goods imported from Russia ($44 million) for all of Canada in June, according to data compiled by Statistics Canada.
This amount of imports from Russia in June may seem small to you. I agree with that. But what takes precedence here is respect or disregard for a question of principle, a question of moral dominance over an intruder.
Because of the famous sanctions against Russia, I got the impression that the Trudeau government, and by extension all provincial governments, including apparently the Legault government, had temporarily banned trade with Russia.
We have to believe that there must be “holes” in the regulations on the special economic measures against Russia that Foreign Minister Mélanie Joly must apply.
WHAT HAVE WE IMPORTED?
Of the $31 million worth of goods imported from Russia in June, Quebec imported $22.1 million worth of “ore and nonmetallic minerals.”
This number represents all Canadian imports of this product category from Russia.
Second among our imports of Russian products in June we find “Automobiles and parts” for an amount of US$5.34 million or 70% of everything imported into Canada in this product category.
Also imported from Russia were “basic chemicals” worth $1.5 million. And forest products, plastic products and rubber products for $1.2 million.
Regarding exports of Quebec products to Russia, we were a little embarrassed in June when Statistics Canada reported exports for Quebec at $0.
With the Russian invasion of Ukraine, a long conflict of mass destruction in Ukraine entering its sixth month, this is at least a given.
For Canada as a whole, Canadian merchandise exports to Russia for the month of June are capped at $3 million.
It was last February, with the Trudeau government just imposing a series of sanctions on Russia, when exports to Vladimir Putin’s country temporarily peaked for the July 2021-June 2022 period.
Canadian exports to Russia surpassed $114 million last February.
And which federal state was the most “active” in February? Uh yes! Quebec with exports totaling $91.3 million, or even 80% of all Canadian products exported to Russia in February.
This month alone, $85.3 million worth of “aircraft and other transportation equipment and parts” were exported to Russia. That was three times more than the amount of exports made in the previous seven months!
After the sudden “rush” in February, Quebec’s aircraft and transport exports to Russia fell to zero!