No cutoff date for Canada to join NAFTA 2.0: Mexico president-elect


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.

But on Thursday the prime minister disputed Trump's statement, insisting Canada made no such request.

Ottawa is also seeking assurances that the United States will not, after signing a new NAFTA deal, turn around and hit Canada with punitive auto tariffs.

"We're very unhappy with the negotiations and the negotiating style of Canada", Trump said.

The U.S. and Mexico reached their agreement in August, triggering talks between the U.S. and Canada, which are being held around the clock this weekend. "I've told him forget about it", Trump remarked Wednesday during a news conference on the sidelines of the U.N. General Assembly.

"We'll see what happens with Canada, if they come along".

The agreement between Mexico, the United States and Canada, as the us president, Trump has called it "a disaster" is in renegotiation since 2017.

Earlier on Wednesday, Trudeau shrugged off USA pressure to quickly agree to a deal and indicated it was possible the three member nations might fail to conclude a new pact.

Freeland and U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer had no meetings at the United Nations, but many high-level conversations happened over the course of the week. Mexican Economy Minister Ildefonso Guajardo said late Friday that the US and Canada were making a renewed push.

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"The ideal is a trilateral deal, but we're prepared for the possible need of a bilateral", he told Bloomberg News.

Auto industry executives say it is unlikely those targets can be met if Canada is not part of the deal, given supply chains that crisscross NAFTA borders multiple times.

Negotiations continued on Sunday amid renewed urgency to nail down a new North American Free Trade Agreement that could be published by the end of the day so it can be signed by Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto before he leaves office, the people said.

As negotiations have dragged, the president has become visibly annoyed with Canadian officials.

The U.S. and Mexico held off on a plan to publish the full legal text of their deal on Friday as the U.S. and Canadian negotiators raced against a September 30 deadline.

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 release of the trade deal text starts a months-long process for US congressional approval that will require a lengthy analysis by the independent USA worldwide Trade Commission and notification periods before an up-or-down vote.

Canadian leaders have objected to Trump's decision to impose tariffs on Canadian steel, citing national security. Or perhaps correction of the imbalance of trade that already favours the United States?

The U.S. exported more goods to Canada previous year than to China, Japan and Germany combined. It would also require automakers to use more local steel and other materials in their vehicles and establish a separate mandate for production in factories paying an hourly wage of at least $16, which will boost output in the US and Canada. Mexican-made products were hit by those actions, which were aimed at protecting USA producers from import surges.