OTTAWA (Reuters) - The Canadian government is considering lowering some import tariffs, Finance Minister Jim Flaherty said in a television interview on Monday without giving any details.
“We’ve eliminated a lot of tariffs in our budgets, particularly the budget last year, and we continue to look at tariffs,” Flaherty told CTV.
“Tariffs are a barrier to trade and to the extent that we can get rid of those kinds of barriers, we’d like to do so. That’s all I can tell you so far,” he said.
He provided no further details.
Flaherty is due to present a fiscal update at some point this autumn, which he has said would not contain budget-like measures.
In the 2010 budget, Ottawa eliminated tariffs on a broad range of goods imported by manufacturers. Flaherty said at the time that the move would encourage investment and productivity. While it was welcomed by manufacturers, a leading industry group said its benefit to business was marginal.
Flaherty’s latest comments come as Canada and the European Union enter a ninth round of negotiations aimed at a deal to knock down trade barriers on goods and services and boost two-way trade by 20 percent.
Reporting by Louise Egan; editing by Rob Wilson