Canada, U.S continue to seek ways to salvage NAFTA as deadline looms – National

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Regardless of some contentious points nonetheless on the desk, the more and more optimistic tone contrasted with U.S. President Donald Trump’s harsh criticism of Canada in current weeks, elevating hopes that the year-long talks will conclude quickly with a trilateral settlement.

Negotiations entered an important part this week after america and Mexico introduced a bilateral deal on Monday, paving the best way for Canada to rejoin talks to salvage the 24-year-old accord that accounts for over $1 trillion in annual commerce.


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Trump has set a Friday deadline for the three international locations to succeed in an settlement, which might enable Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto to signal it earlier than he leaves workplace on the finish of November. Beneath U.S. regulation, Trump should wait 90 days earlier than signing the pact.

The U.S. president has warned he might attempt to proceed with a take care of Mexico alone and levy tariffs on Canadian-made automobiles if Ottawa doesn’t come on board, though U.S. lawmakers have stated ratifying a bilateral deal wouldn’t be straightforward.

Negotiators have been anticipated to work by way of the night time forward of extra talks on Thursday morning between Canada’s lead negotiator, Overseas Minister Chrystia Freeland, and U.S. Commerce Consultant Robert Lighthizer.

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Trump and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau expressed optimism on Wednesday about reaching an settlement by Friday, though a lot work stays on particular points.

One sticking level for Canada is the U.S. effort to dump the Chapter 19 dispute-resolution mechanism that hinders america from pursuing anti-dumping and anti-subsidy instances. Lighthizer stated on Monday that Mexico had agreed to eradicate the mechanism.

“I believe the Canadian view on Chapter 19 is well-known,” Freeland advised reporters late on Wednesday after a day of talks. “It is a very intense second within the negotiations. We’re making an attempt to get a number of issues finished actually rapidly. I believe it will likely be handiest if we maintain our negotiations on particular points to the negotiating desk.”


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Ottawa can be able to make concessions on Canada’s protected dairy market in a bid to save lots of the dispute-settlement system, the Globe and Mail reported on Tuesday. The dairy sector has repeatedly attracted Trump’s fury.

That compromise is more likely to upset Canadian dairy farmers, who’ve an outsized affect in Canadian politics, with their focus within the vote-rich provinces of Ontario and Quebec.

“Finally, we’ve acquired enormous points which are nonetheless to be resolved,” stated Jerry Dias, head of Canada’s influential Unifor labor union. “Both we’re going to be buying and selling companions or we’re going to combat.”


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