Steve Verheul, Canada’s lead NAFTA negotiator, appeared before the Standing Committee on International Trade earlier this week to provide an update on the negotiations.
From a Canadian perspective, Verheul said that Canada wants a net neutrality provision included in NAFTA, noting:
We are including provisions such as online consumer protection to ensure that that is provided for and we also have provisions to provide personal information protection, which we feel is essential in this kind of trade, along with our position that we want to protect net neutrality when it comes to digital trade.
The NAFTA digital trade chapter is the ideal place for a net neutrality provision, though the rule should be stronger than the lightweight provision that was included in the TPP.
While Canada is seeking NAFTA net neutrality protections, the U.S. is focused on establishing safe harbour protections for Internet intermediaries.