SURREY — Surrey Board of Trade CEO Anita Huberman predicted on Tuesday that a Hillary Clinton election victory would be better for business in Surrey and a Donald Trump win would bring “uncertainty” to the economy.
Well, Trump won.
In his victory speech, President-Elect Trump told “the world community that while we will always put America’s interests first. we will deal fairly with everyone, with everyone. All people and all other nations. We will seek common ground, not hostility; partnership, not conflict.”
Huberman said “those are good words, but I’ll have to see what transpires.”
She predicts the financial investment markets to fluctuate over the coming months.
Surrey, with Canada’s busiest border crossing second only to Windsor’s, is home to a vast number of B.C.’s manufacturers.
Huberman said Democratic administrations “have proven to be more beneficial to Canadians” whereas Republican administrations are traditionally more protectionist.
Trump said during the campaign he would scrap the North America Free Trade Agreement and not pursue the Trans-Pacific Partnership.
This is concerning to a border city like Surrey, and Canada in general, Huberman said.
“It’s really concerning to us,” Huberman said. “We’re a small country. We live in a global economy. You can’t close borders.”
She’s also concerned a Trump president will result in the U.S. Fed raising interest rates.
“Whatever the U.S. does, Canada will soon thereafter follow,” she said. “Canada is a shadow of the U.S.”
As for Clinton, she said, “She’s not perfect either, but there’s more certainty with her. You can have, or so it seems, a meaningful dialogue based on facts.”
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Surrey Mayor Linda Hepner, bleary-eyed from watching the early morning election results, said she’ll suspend her judgment on what Trump’s presidency will mean for Surrey until he takes office, selects a team of advisors and “activates” his policy.
“I think those comments were measured and welcome,” she said of his victory speech. “I think only time is going to tell.”
Hepner said she’s struck by how so many Americans felt disenfranchised and “cannot imagine” what it must feel like to achieve the highest level of public office in the United States “with no political experience at all.”
Meanwhile, Premier Christy Clark said B.C. will work with the Government of Canada “diligently and with determination to ensure we protect and grow the relationship that is crucial to working families in our province on issues like free trade and a new softwood lumber agreement.”