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A call for free movement between Canada, the UK, Australia and New Zealand



The four countries listed above have a good number of things in common. They speak the same language, they have the same common law legal system, with the same respect for human rights. The parliamentary systems of each of these four countries are very similar. The same thing goes with their identical Westminster style. Even their economic growth rates are very close and similar too. Looking at all these points of similarities that are characteristic of these four Commonwealth countries, creating a free movement agreement between them is rather a good idea. This has been the plea and motto  of James Skinner, founder of CANZUK International. James Skinner is a native of the UK who later moved over to Australia for professional reasons. But he went through a lot of difficulties while trying to immigrate to Australia and Canada, being initially a native of the UK. Former founder of the Commonwealth Freedom of Movement Organization (CFMO), he henceforth decided to fight for the right to free movement, free trade and cooperation between the four stated countries.

Fighting with him on the same side are the federal Conservatives in Canada and many other politicians from the four stated countries.From Canada, Andrew Scheer, leader of the Conservative Party of Canada clearly stated: “I very much support a trade deal with those countries. Australia, New Zealand and the United Kingdom have a similar basis of law, they have a common democratic system, they have the same types of legislation and regulations around investment and trade. Those are the types of things we don't enjoy with China”. Another member of the Canadian parliament, Michael Chong also declared in favour of the CANZUP mentioning that it was  “a good idea to explore a new trade deal with Australia, New Zealand and the United Kingdom, particularly in light of the Brexit vote” .The number of signatures make up to nearly 300, 000 in favour of the CANZUP free movement program.

Even though many seem enthusiastic about the CANZUP free movement agreement, others do not totally agree with Skinner’s point of view. One of these opposing figures is Patrick Leblond, a professor of public and international affairs at the Ottawa University. He feels skeptical about the whole CANZUP free movement issue mainly because of the trading interests of each of the four countries concerned.  Canada already has a major trading partner who is the United States of America. He further says that the UK too, already has its largest partner being Europe. As concerns Australia and New Zealand, they too are everlasting trading partners to each other. And since Australia and New Zealand are competing in the global market against Canada, to Leblond that is enough evidence that this whole free trade CANZUP movement is not strongly founded. Apart from the commercial point of view, Leblond also mentioned the fact that other minor aspects such as the social welfare, the sick leaves, the pensions of visiting citizens could pose a problem in the management for the four countries involved.


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