OTTAWA, Ontario (NewsNation Now) — COVID-19 restriction protests at the U.S.- Canada border could lead to shipping delays and more inflation.
Throughout the crisis, Ukraine’s leaders have sought to project calm — repeatedly playing down the threat of an invasion.
Canadian protesters pushing back against COVID-19 restrictions have been disrupting travel on the busiest international crossing in North America all week. The Ambassador Bridge that links Windsor, Ontario and Detroit was partially blocked with travels still heavily impeded Wednesday morning. Protesters have said they will not leave until all vaccine mandates and COVID-19 restrictions in Canada are lifted.
Even though the demonstration is centered in Canada, these new escalations have the potential to land a major blow to the U.S. supply chain.
The United States exports and imports over 180% more items from Canada now than we did in the early 1990s — a sign of just how important this trading relationship has become. In 2019, American goods and services trade with Canada totaled an estimated $718 billion. Canada is the U.S.’s second-largest goods trading partner and largest goods export market. 27% of all American trade with Canada crosses the 1.6-mile Ambassador Bridge.
On a normal day, more than 40,000 people and $323 million in goods cross the Ambassador Bridge. The auto industry faces the biggest risk if the disruptions continue, with about a third of those imports worth roughly $100 million being auto-related.
If the blockading continues, prices could go up and delivery times will be pushed back, the Automotive Parts Manufacturers Association said. It could also be an issue for auto suppliers in Michigan, Ohio, Indiana and Illinois who use that border crossing to send their cars to Canadian customers.
Industry leaders say that they may also be forced to look at layoffs if shipments are delayed even further. There are other crossings between the U.S. and Canada, but some are hours away.