Industry Canada hires former diplomat as U.S. trade advisor
by Kelsey Johnson (feat. Eric Miller)
June 13, 2017
A former Canadian diplomat has been handed a $90,000 contract from Industry Canada to come with a strategy on how to engage with American politicians on trade.
Eric Miller is president of the Rideau Potomac Strategy Group, which bills itself as a “cross border consultancy that advises clients on government affairs, trade issues, technology challenges and geopolitical development.”
Industry Canada documents show his responsibilities include making “regular presentations to senior management reviewing current U.S. trade policy actions.” Miller also will be expected help identify and plan potential meetings between the federal industry minister, senior management and American officials, while developing an engagement strategy.
He must also be available for “ad-hoc consultation on current dynamics in Canada-U.S. trade relations,” according to the notice to hire contract posted online, which requires ‘secret’ clearance and ends June 30, 2018. Anyone else interested in the contract has two weeks to submit their bids to Industry Canada.
Ottawa’s latest hire comes as the federal government prepares to renegotiate the North American Free Trade Agreement with the United States and Mexico. Those talks could start as early as mid-August.
No stranger to Ottawa, Miller previously worked as vice president of policy, North America, and cybersecurity at the Business Council of Canada. He’s also a former Industry Canada employee at the Canadian embassy in Washington, where his bio says he advised senior staff “on U.S. economic, political, and technology issues.”
The former public servant also helped design Ottawa’s bailout package for the Canadian auto industry in 2009 and was part of the negotiating team that created the Beyond the Border Action Plan in 2011.
He’s served as an advisor to 40 governments in Latin America, the Caribbean and Asia-Pacific on various trade and economic files, has served as the USAID Chief of Party in Panama and spent eight years in the Integration and Trade division at the Inter-American Development Bank.
Miller has appeared as a witness in front of various Senate, House of Commons and Congressional committee meetings.