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Sask. in ‘very good position’ with U.S. regardless of election result: Scott Moe

Click to play video 'Sask. in ‘very good position’ with U.S. regardless of election result: Scott Moe' Sask. in ‘very good position’ with U.S. regardless of election result: Scott Moe
WATCH: Saskatchewan Premier Scott Moe says he's concerned about specific issues, rather than whether Donald Trump or Joe Biden wins the U.S. presidency – Nov 3, 2020

Scott Moe is less concerned about whether Donald Trump or Joe Biden wins the U.S. presidential election, and more focused on specific issues between Saskatchewan and its top trading partner.

During the recent provincial election campaign, Moe expressed concern about Biden’s plans to scrap the US$8-bllion Keystone XL pipeline project. If constructed, it would carry up to 830,000 barrels of oil per day from Alberta to Nebraska.

Read more: U.S. election results: Live, real-time election results as Joe Biden set to become president

“I think we’re in a very good position with our trade standing with the United States, regardless of who wins the election here tonight,” Moe told reporters Tuesday.

Moe also noted Saskatchewan’s trade hurdles under the Trump administration, including tariffs on Canadian steel. Regina-based Evraz is the largest steel company in Western Canada.

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In 2018, the U.S. Department of Commerce floated the idea of an investigation into uranium imports meant to review whether they “threaten to impair national security.” The United States never imposed sanctions on Canadian uranium, though it would have had a significant impact on Saskatoon-based Cameco – one of the largest uranium producers in the world.

Moe noted the trading relationship between Saskatchewan and the United States has been long-standing and wide-ranging.

Read more: Saskatoon-based Cameco responds to U.S. uranium investigation launch

“The world, quite frankly, needs more of what Saskatchewan can provide and we’re going to position this province in the best possible place to provide it,” Moe said.

Moe said his biggest hope is that the outcome of the U.S. election is decisive, so Saskatchewan knows with certainty which administration it is engaging with.

Click to play video 'RMC security expert weighs in on possible civil unrest post US election' RMC security expert weighs in on possible civil unrest post US election
RMC security expert weighs in on possible civil unrest post US election – Nov 3, 2020

University of Saskatchewan political scientist Greg Poelzer said despite Biden’s opposition to Keystone XL, a Democrat win would bring greater certainty to Saskatchewan.

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“We have a very protectionist president in Trump and I expect that to continue,” Poelzer said. “The only area where a Trump presidency would be beneficial of course is around Keystone XL pipeline, which he approved.”

Read more: Canada’s support for Keystone XL ‘unwavering’ regardless of U.S. election: O’Regan

With issues like the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement crafted, Poelzer said Saskatchewan is in a better position with the United States compared to four years ago.

“But we are far from out of the woods because we have a president that is very volatile, that doesn’t have a consistent ideological core,” Poelzer said.

Saskatchewan sent roughly $16 billion in goods south of the border in 2019. China, Saskatchewan’s second-ranked trading partner, received $3.1 billion in goods.

–With files from Hannah Jackson and The Canadian Press