Friday, 16 November, 2018

At UN, Trump tees off on NAFTA, knocks Freeland, threatens tariffs

US Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer said US President Donald Trump's trade tariffs were Canada Not Making ‘Essential’ Trade Concessions According to Lighthizer AFP25 Sep 2018
Cristina Norman | 27 September, 2018, 11:16

U.S. President Donald Trump says he rejected Prime Minister Justin Trudeau's request for a one-on-one meeting to discuss NAFTA.

"Cause his tariffs are too high and he doesn't seem to want to seem to want to move and I've told him forget about it and frankly we're thinking about just taxing cars coming in from Canada".

Trump went on to say that the United States will be taxing cars coming in from Canada because the USA is "very unhappy" with the current NAFTA negotiations. "That's the mother lode, that's the big one".

"We're going to go ahead with Mexico", he added. "Canada has treated us very badly".

US automakers and congressional aides now believe a deal with Canada is not possible by the deadline, which they said would most likely prompt the United States to move ahead with a bilateral agreement with Mexico.

Canada is now continuing NAFTA negotiations with the US.

Mexico has already signed on to a new deal to replace the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), but the U.S. leader is upset over Canada's tariffs on the United States, and is considering implementing a new tax on Canadian-made cars.

U.S. President Donald Trump had already reached a deal with his Mexican counterpart, President Enrique Pena Nieto, in August.

U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer said there was "some distance" between the two sides on issues such as access to Canada's dairy market and how best to settle trade disputes.

Trump has repeatedly threatened to cut Canada out of a trade agreement if the country does not agree with his terms.

The 2 nations have been locked in negotiations for a year on a rewrite of the 25-year-old continental trade deal that Trump blames for losses of U.S. jobs and industry. Fox Business reporter Susan Lee asked Trump in a press conference at the United Nations General Assembly in NY.

"I'm not going to use the name 'NAFTA, '" he said.

"We will keep working as long as it takes to get to the right deal for Canada", Trudeau earlier told reporters at the United Nations.

"I don't really see the elements of a deal", said Mark Warner, a Toronto-based trade lawyer.

Mexico and Canada have stood firm on the importance of maintaining the trilateral format of the NAFTA free trade deal, even as Trump has signaled a desire for individual deals with each country.

"Everybody knows what each other's position is on all of the major issues and it's really a question of whether or not the US wants to have a deal", he said at an event organized by the University of Toronto's Munk School of Global affairs and the Politico news outlet.

"We will keep working as long as it takes to get to the right deal for Canada", Trudeau told reporters when asked about the increasing USA pressure to wrap up the talks.

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