While 60% of Canadians Consider U.S.A. Canada's Closest Friend and Ally, Only 18% of Americans Name Canada As Same - 56% Instead Name Britain

Eight-in-ten (82%) Canadians Acknowledge U.S.A. as Its Largest Trading Partner, But Only 14% of Americans See It That Way - Name Japan (27%), China (25%) as Top Trade Partners

While 60% of Canadians Consider U.S.A. Canada's Closest Friend and Ally, Only 18% of Americans Name Canada As Same - 56% Instead Name Britain

While Majority (69%) of Americans View Canada as a Separate Country, 30% Think of It As Just Another State

Toronto, ONTARIO - According to a poll conducted by Ipsos-Reid on behalf of The Canada Institute of the Washington D.C. based Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, six-in-ten (60%) of Canadians say that the United States is Canada's closest friend and ally. This compares to only 18% of Americans who name Canada in this role -- a majority of Americans (56%) cite Britain.

When asked who Canada's largest trading partner is, eight-in-ten (82%) Canadians indicate the United States. However, when the mirror question is asked of Americans, only 14% believe that Canada is the United States largest partner in trade -- one-quarter believe it to be Japan (27%) or China (25%).

As for how Americans view Canada, seven-in-ten (69%) Americans say that they see their northern neighbours as a separate country, much like Britain or Japan. However, 30% see Canada as more like just another state such as Michigan or Oregon. These results are similar to the views of Canadians when asked the identical question -- two-thirds (64%) say that Americans view Canada as a separate country, while 35% feel that Americans view Canada as more like just another state.

These are the findings of an Ipsos-Reid poll conducted for the Canada Institute of the Woodrow Wilson Center for Scholars. Interviews were conducted with 1,000 randomly selected adult Canadians between April 30th and May 2nd, 2002 and with 791 randomly selected adult Americans between May 3rd and 5th, 2002. With a sample of 1,000, the results are considered accurate to within 177 3.1 percentage points, 19 times out of 20. With a sample of this 791, the results are considered accurate to within 177 3.5 percentage points, 19 times out of 20. The margins of error will be larger within regions and for other sub-groupings of the survey population. These data were statistically weighted to ensure the sample's regional and age/sex composition reflects that of the actual target population according to the Canadian and American Census data.

While 60% of Canadians Consider U.S.A. Canada's Closest Friend and Ally, Only 18% of Americans Name Canada As Same - 56% Instead Name Britain

When asked if they had to pick just one country from around the world that they consider Canada's closest friend and ally, six-in-ten (60%) cite the United States for this role. One-in-five (21%) mentioned Great Britain, while one-in-twenty (4%) said France.

  • Residents of Saskatchewan/Manitoba (71%), Alberta (66%), and Ontario (63%) are the most likely to cite the United States as Canada's closest friend and ally. This compares with 55% of those on either coast (British Columbia 55%, Atlantic Canada 55%), and 54% of Quebecers.
  • Support for Great Britain is highest in British Columbia (32%), followed by Saskatchewan/Manitoba (25%), Ontario (24%), Atlantic Canada (23%) and Alberta (17%). Quebecers (9%) are least likely to believe this is the case. Those in Quebec (17%) are the most likely to mention France in this role.
  • Men (65% versus 54% of women) are more likely to mention the United States as Canada's closest international friend and ally.
  • Canadians in the highest income households (65%) are more likely than those in the lowest (57%) or middle (56%) income households to cite the United States.

When Americans were asked what one country they personally consider as America's closest friend and ally, only one-in-five (18%) cite Canada. This compares to a majority (56%) who name Great Britain. After Canada, Americans named Israel (6%), Russia (2%), and France (2%) as their closest friend and ally.

  • Residents in the Midwest states (26%) are the most likely to cite Canada for this role, this compares to the views of those in the Northeast (16%), the West (16%) and the South (15%).

Eight-in-ten (82%) Canadians Acknowledge U.S.A. As Its Largest Trading Partner, But Only 14% of Americans See It That Way - Name Japan (27%) as Top Trade Partner

Eight-in-ten (82%) Canadians say that the United States is Canada's largest trading partner. Other countries mentioned included Japan (2%), Mexico (1%), Great Britain (1%).

  • The United States is mentioned the most by those in British Columbia (87%), Saskatchewan/Manitoba (87%) and Ontario (86%), followed by those in Alberta (79%), Atlantic Canada (78%). Quebecers (74%) are least likely to cite the United States.
  • The United States is mentioned by more men (86%) than women (78%).
  • Canadians with a university degree (90%) or other post-secondary education (84%) are more likely to mention the U.S. as Canada's largest trading partner than those with a high school diploma (74%) or less education (67%).
  • Canadians in the highest income households (91%) are more likely than those in middle (81%) or lower (74%) income households to cite the United States.

Americans on the other hand, are more likely to say that Japan (27%) or China (25%) is their largest trading partner. Only 14% name Canada as their largest partner in trade. America's other NFTA partner, Mexico, is mentioned by 7%, while Great Britain is cited by 4%.

  • Men (18%) compared to women (10%) are more likely to name Canada.
  • Older (16%) and middle aged (16%) Americans are more likely to cite Canada in this role than younger (9%) Americans. Younger (31%) and older residents (27%) are more likely to mention Japan, than middle aged (23%) Americans.

While Majority (69%) of Americans View Canada as a Separate Country, 30% Think of It As Just Another State

When asked how they view Canada, seven-in-ten (69%) Americans say they think of Canada as an entirely separate country, while three-in-ten (30%) say they view Canada as like just another state.

  • The view of Canada as a separate country is highest among residents of the Western states (77%), while it is lowest among those furthest from the Canadian border - residents in the Southern states (64%). Conversely, Southern Americans (33%) are more likely than Western Americans (23%) to view Canada as just another state like Michigan or Oregon.
  • Middle aged (74%) Americans are more likely to say they view Canada as a separate country compared to younger (64%) Americans. While 35% of younger Americans say that Canada is just like another state, only 25% of middle aged Americans hold this view.
  • Higher (76%) and middle (70%) income households are more likely to view Canada a separate country than those in lower (59%) income households.

Two-Thirds (64%) of Canadians Think Americans View Canada as A Separate Country, 35% As Just Another State

Two-thirds (64%) believe that Americans view Canada as a separate independent country, while 35% say that they see Canada as more like just another state.

  • Most Canadians outside of Quebec (42%) believe that the Americans view Canada as a separate country. This view is strongest in British Columbia (78%), and Saskatchewan/Manitoba (74%) followed by residents of Alberta (71%), Ontario (69%) and the Atlantic provinces (63%).
  • Conversely, those in Quebec (54%) are the most likely to believe that Americans view Canada as just like any one of the states. This compares to only 20% of British Columbians.
  • Middle aged (67%) Canadians are more likely to say that Canada is viewed as an independent country than older (59%) Canadians. Older (39%) Canadians are more likely than middle aged (31%) Canadians to believe that Canada is treated just like one of the 50 states.
  • Higher household income (72%) Canadians are more likely than either middle (58%) or lower (58%) household income Canadians to feel that Canada is viewed as an independent country by Americans.

To view the complete release and tables, please open the attached PDF files.

 

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For more information on this news release, please contact:
John Wright
Senior Vice-President
Public Affairs
Ipsos-Reid
(416) 324-2900

David Biette
Director
Canada Institute
Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars
(202 ) 691-4133
www.wilsoncenter.org

 

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