Canada FM postpones United Nations speech as free trade talks intensify
Oct 01 2018
Trudeau spokeswoman Chantal Gagnon said: "No meeting was requested".
The U.S. and Canada will likely wrap up negotiations about a revised version of the North American Free Trade Agreement this weekend after a month of tumultuous talks, according to a tweet from a Bloomberg News White House reporter. Negotiators are racing against the clock because of a US-set deadline. A USTR spokesman declined comment on the timing.
Ujczo said while Canada would rather have tariff protection spelled out when the deal is announced, he expects that as a compromise, all three countries will say they plan to meet again in the near future to hammer out the details of a detente on the tariff threat.
US President Donald Trump has been seeking to renegotiate the United States' trade agreements with other countries, including the NAFTA deal, since his election campaign in 2016.
Freeland had been scheduled to deliver Canada's address to the General Assembly on Saturday in NY, but Canada exchanged the slot with another country.
Mexican Senator Ricardo Monreal said on Twitter the text would be released simultaneously in Mexico and the United States. The U.S. president stayed seated as he extended his hand for a cursory handshake.
Trump cited dairy as a sticking point, but Yussuff said the Canadians needs a guarantee it won't be hit with new tariffs if they sign a deal.
"We've made the deal with Mexico, and it's a great deal for both countries", Trump said.
Canadian President Justin Trudeau this week fired back, saying, "Americans are finding that the negotiations are tough because Canadians are tough negotiators, as we should be", Reuters reported.
The two sides are still far apart on major issues such as how to settle disputes and US demands for more access to Canada's protected dairy market.
The prime minister, the foreign affairs minister, and Canada's ambassador to the USA are leading the Canadian negotiations from Ottawa, as the US and Mexican imposed deadline of September 30 at midnight closes in.
So-called Chapter 19 dispute panels, which the USA wants to eliminate from Nafta and which Canada wants to preserveAn exemption for cultural sectors which Canada wants to preserveThe use of Section 232 investigations to apply tariffs to steel, aluminum, and potentially autos.
Trump's new threat came four days before the U.S. -imposed deadline of September 30 for Canada to provide the U.S. Congress with an updated text of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) deal.
Auto industry executives say it is unlikely those targets can be met if Canada is not part of the deal, given supply chains that crisscross NAFTA borders multiple times.
Officials though have blown through several deadlines since the talks started in August 2017 and a third Canadian source said that if the two sides were close enough at midnight, negotiations could spill over into Monday. They only said they didn't request a formal meeting.
But that would mean 'going ahead with a bilateral agreement and then later defining what legal actions we would have to take to maintain the possibility of a three-way deal, ' he said.
Those rules require that a certain percentage of an imported vehicle's components be manufactured in the United States.
One solution might be to imitate the provisions of the bilateral Mexico-U.S. deal on NAFTA.