U.S., Mexico reach NAFTA deal; talks with Canada to start immediately

U.S., Mexico reach NAFTA deal; talks with Canada to start immediately

Troy Powers
August 28, 2018

Trump has rejected other multi-national deals, such as the Trans-Pacific Partnership (another trade pact) and the Paris Agreement on climate change mitigation, expressing a strong preference for one-on-one negotiations on trade and other matters with countries.

On Monday, the Trump administration and Mexico announced a compromise on that divisive issue: An overhauled NAFTA would remain in force for 16 years.

The president said he plans to "terminate" the existing NAFTA agreement, which now includes Canada.

Talks started about a year ago after Mr Trump threatened to pull out.

Trump finalized negotiations Monday following talks Sunday led by Trump's son-in-law and White House adviser Jared Kushner, along with US Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer.

"We will only sign a new NAFTA that is good for Canada and good for the middle class", said Adam Austen, a spokesman for Freeland, adding that "Canada's signature is required".

"(Canada) have tariffs of nearly 300 per cent on some of our dairy products, so we can't have that.

Under the tentative new NAFTA agreement, auto companies that want to benefit from the free trade bloc will have to make more of an automobile's total worth in one of the three countries. In a statement-and public telephone call with Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto-Trump said that "They used to call it NAFTA" but because NAFTA has "a bad connotation", the new deal would be called the U.S. -Mexico Trade Agreement. He long has said he favors trade pacts only between Washington and one other country.

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With Canadian-U.S.relations at a low after Trump assailed Prime Minister Justin Trudeau in June, the country has withdrawn itself from NAFTA talks in recent weeks. Several trade experts noted that many provisions in Monday's agreement resemble what was in President Obama's Trans Pacific Partnership, a deal Trump pulled out of when he took office.

On Saturday, Seade told reporters that the nations have resolved concerns that the deal had too many restrictions on how the next government can treat foreign oil companies investing in Mexico. He covers US politics and current affairs.

Without Canada, America's number two trading partner, it's unclear whether any new U.S. trade agreement with Mexico would be possible. "A lot of people thought we would never get here because we all negotiate tough". Because we all negotiate tough.

Trump said the conference call, which was broadcast live on television on Monday, was being held to "celebrate the understanding" the U.S. and Mexico have reached on trade, calling it "an incredible deal for both parties".

He announced the progress from the Oval Office, with Mexican president Pena Nieto joining in on speakerphone. The call finally was connected.

Canada must now return, hat in hand, for a deal. A senior USA trade official said there are hopes that a final three-nation accord can be reached by Friday.

"For some time now, (Trump) has been very prudent in referring to Mexicans, or he hasn't said offensive things", Lopez Obrador said. "It's not part of the strategy or anything". There are too many contentious issues between the two world economic powers to get anything done, he said.