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Pres. Trump Welcomes Canadian PM Trudeau to the White House
12 October 2017, 03:01 | Erica Roy
Matthew Lloyd Stringer Getty Images
Trade experts say the NAFTA talks are likely to stall in the face of aggressive USA attempts to sharply increase content requirements for cars and vehicle parts. The Trump administration will move forward with an aggressive rules-of-origin proposal for autos and auto parts that will target 50 percent USA content requirement and 85 percent (up from 62.5 percent) regional content, sources say, when negotiations resume this week. Trudeau will hold a press conference on his own after he meets with Trump.
Trump ordered a renegotiation of NAFTA and threatened to pull out of the pact if the United States did not get a better deal in talks between the US, Mexico and Canada that began in August to revamp it.
The latest round of NAFTA talks kicked off with a discussion of government procurement, already a thorny subject - USA negotiators suggested during the last round in Ottawa that they want to limit Canadian and Mexican access to US projects. Trudeau and U.K. Prime Minister Theresa May have called on Trump to intervene.
For the first time, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is acknowledging that the North American Free Trade Agreement could be in trouble.
Nafta talks, initially scheduled to run from October 11 to October 15 in Washington, may now be extended.
"An abrupt exit from NAFTA would be more of a loss for US exporters than for Mexican ones", he said. Freeland also characterized the current era as the "most uncertain moment in worldwide relations since the end of the Second World War".
But he also asked for more access to Canada's dairy market. "If you think that's a good idea, let the White House know". Last week, Washington imposed hefty duties on Canadian-owned Bombadier airplane imports; the levies have made it virtually impossible for the firm to sell its planes in the U.S. market.
What anything could look like was raised by U.S. President Donald Trump in his talks with Trudeau earlier Wednesday at the White House.
Trump administration officials have said they want a deal by December, a timeline that observers say is increasingly unlikely. Mexican Presidential elections and US mid-term elections scheduled for next year threaten to add to tensions in negotiations.
Or perhaps separate bilateral deals with Canada and Mexico will be the way forward, the president suggested.
Trudeau, in his brief remarks to reporters in the Oval Office, spoke of the ties that bind the two neighbors and major trading partners.
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Kim responded with dire threats and insults of his own, calling President Trump "deranged" and a "dotard". It "hasn't worked, agreements violated before the ink was dry, makings fools of U.S. negotiators".