Mexico trade deal text to exclude Canada, irritating U.S. lawmakers

Mexico trade deal text to exclude Canada, irritating U.S. lawmakers

Mexico trade deal text to exclude Canada, irritating U.S. lawmakers

It was those attempted discussions that Trump was referring to when he said he refused to meet Trudeau, the official said, rather than a request for a formal bilateral sit-down meeting, which the Canadians said they did not make.

Mexican Economy Minister Ildefonso Guajardo said late Friday that the USA and Canada were making a renewed push. "Canada has treated us very badly". A USTR spokesman declined comment on the timing.

If the USA and Mexico try to advance a bilateral deal without Canada they may face delays in Congress, where key lawmakers have called for the three-nation format to continue. The U.S. had given Canada until Sunday to join the new deal or watch as the U.S. and Mexico went ahead without it.

"Frankly, we're thinking about just taxing cars coming in from Canada", Mr. Trump said at a press conference earlier this week.

The U.S. -Mexico deal would increase to 75 percent from 62.5 percent the share of each vehicle that must be produced in the United States to qualify for duty-free treatment.

Queries to Canadian officials and the U.S. Trade Representative's office to verify the U.S. proposal were not immediately answered.

"They're moving towards closing the deal - it's really not a question of if, it's a question of when", said Daniel Ujczo, an Ohio-based global trade lawyer at Dickinson Wright who represents large USA automakers and auto-parts manufacturers.

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has never extended an invitation for a meeting with U.S. President Donald Trump in NY, according to a report by CTV on Wednesday night.

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The text will flesh out an agreement in principle reached by the United States and Mexico on August 27 that aims to rebalance automotive trade between the two countries and modernize the almost 25-year-old NAFTA with new chapters on digital trade, stronger labor and environmental standards.

According to a readout of the call from the Prime Minister's Office, the two men "agreed to work closely together to further strengthen the dynamic partnership between Canada and Mexico", and "discussed NAFTA and the mutually beneficial economic and trading relationship between our two countries". The 1994 pact underpins $1.2 trillion in annual trade and its demise would be enormously damaging, say economists.

They haven't said why, but it's likely to let Freeland focus on efforts to get Canada into a trilateral NAFTA deal with the US and Mexico, which sources say have intensified this week in the face of Monday's congressional deadline.

Speaking to reporters this morning in Ottawa, Trudeau disputed Trump's statement - insisting Canada did not request a meeting with the president this week.

Negotiators - still apart on matters such as dispute resolution and a USA demand for more access to Canada's dairy markets - are also tackling the matter of American tariffs. But the administration's hopes of proceeding with a Mexico-only pact face stiff opposition from leading congressional Republicans and business groups such as the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the Business Roundtable and the National Association of Manufacturers.

"That means the negotiations aren't over yet", he said. "A deal is not necessarily going to happen", said the source, who requested anonymity given the sensitivity of the situation.

"Canada wants some assurances going forward that the president will not continue to use this, after we sign an agreement, to harass our industries simply because he's mad at our prime minister", the president of the Canadian Labour Congress told BNN Bloomberg television Thursday.

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