NAFTA: "We are ready to all" - Justin Trudeau

Cheryl Sanders
October 12, 2017

Negotiators have completed talks on NAFTA provisions relating to small and medium enterprises as well as competition, Lighthizer's office said.

Failing to secure an agreement for access to the Single European Market, Britain will consider joining the North American Free Trade Agreement, the Telegraph reported on Tuesday.

"With an agreement, in 10 years I see a strong region that can face Asia or China, without an agreement I see a weaker region in the medium and long term".

After having been confronted with the threats of the president Donald Trump on the termination of the free trade Agreement north american (NAFTA), Justin Trudeau says he is ready for any eventuality, Wednesday, and even to sign an agreement without the Mexico.

Trump added that a "very creative" deal was still possible to benefit all three countries.

Trump, who made trade a key part of his 2016 presidential campaign, has repeatedly criticized Canada, alleging that it unfairly blocks USA dairy products and subsidizes its softwood lumber industry. "The problem is that we are running against a clock", he says. We have lost so much of our auto business to Mexico.

Trudeau's government, agreeing with Canada's largest union, previously put the issue of worker rights in the US - specifically repeal of so-called "right-to-work" laws - on the NAFTA bargaining table.

NAFTA negotiators face tough new USA demands to increase regional content for autos to 85 percent from 62.5 percent, with 50 percent from the United States, according to people briefed on the plan. I have spoken to leaders in Canada and Mexico on multiple occasions and they have constantly reiterated one point to me: They want to work with us, but they have to be able to sell any deal to Legislatures back in their home countries. Trudeau has said he is optimistic about the deal's fate but admitted there was room for improvement. Mexico could leave NAFTA and have the strength to move on without any serious long-term structural damage to the economy, he said.

So the administration has been seeking to ensure that more auto production be made in America to receive NAFTA benefits, that more government contracts in the NAFTA bloc go to US companies and that NAFTA expire unless the countries agreed every few years to extend it.

U.S. Chamber of Commerce CEO Thomas Donohue, speaking in Mexico City on Tuesday, pledged to fight "like hell" to defend Nafta if Trump tries to pull out.

The proposals call for North American content overall to rise to 85 percent from the current 62.5 percent.

Trudeau was asked whether a bilateral deal with Mexico could be in the cards should the trilateral talks fail. The United States takes in three quarters of Canadian exports, but trade relations have been strained since Trump's inauguration earlier this year.

"Instead of encouraging more US content, these provisions will lead to less USA content", Wilson said.

But Pena Nieto's time at the helm of the Mexican government is coming to an end, with elections in his country scheduled for 2018.

An auto-parts industry executive warned Wednesday that tightening the rules of origin for cars will add complexity and costs.

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