Canada's Trudeau faces hard choices at NAFTA talks

Canada's Trudeau faces hard choices at NAFTA talks

Another lingering sticking point is Chapter 19, set up to resolve disputes among the three countries and industry around how to implement NAFTA rules.

Commercial trucks exit the highway for the Bridge to Canada, in Detroit, Michigan U.S. August 30, 2018.

She said she hoped for "constructive conversations" Wednesday. Giving up the exemptions would be tantamount to giving up Canadian sovereignty and identity, Trudeau said.

Campbell, who served in Brian Mulroney's cabinet and later became Canada's first female prime minister for six months in 1993 after Mulroney resigned, said Chapter 19 dispute resolution was "important" in the first 15 years of the agreement, but hasn't been used as frequently in the past decade. "We have a president that doesn't always follow the rules as they're laid out", Trudeau said in a radio interview. "My goal would be if we can get fewer tariffs I think Americans should win".

Polls showed that Canadians cheered when their prime minister announced this summer that Canada would not be pushed around by President Trump.

The negotiations are aimed at bringing Canada into the NAFTA fold, but Canada and the USA remain far apart on several issues including culture, dairy and the Chapter 19 dispute resolution mechanism.

Donald Trump has been accusing Canada of "taking advantage" of the US; Canadian Foreign Minister Chrystia Freeland has refused to react.

"I call him Donald".

"It's a big risk for Mr. Trudeau and for the country's economy", she told AFP.

"I don't really fuss too much with what Mr. Trump decides to call me". Dawson said Canada has also looked at other policy instruments to protect Canadian cultural industries, such as the deal Ottawa did with Netflix to develop Canadian content.

Officials for both sides are scheduled to meet in Washington on Wednesday in a bid to settle some major differences. "We are concerned that excluding Canada from a final agreement will limit our export opportunities and hurt the USA economy", said Gary Shapiro, the head of the Consumer Technology Association, in a statement. The deal also says that 40-45% of every vehicle must be built by workers who earn at least $16 per hour, so that firms don't find it as profitable to move production to Mexico, where wages are lower than in the US. They appear to be mirroring the rhetoric of the Trump administration, which insists that it is pursuing a better deal for US citizens. "There is no political necessity to keep Canada in the new NAFTA deal", he wrote on Twitter over the weekend. "Is there still a public policy case to be made that you shouldn't allow foreigners to own bookstores in Canada, because what we ended up with is a whole lot of Chapters stores - which are terrific - and no Barnes and Nobles stores, because it kept American investors out?"

While Freeland said she agreed with Trudeau's assessment of Trump, she went out of her way to praise Lighthizer's "good faith" and "good will", clearly assuming the role of the good cop as the NAFTA talks enter a critical phase just a block from Trump's White House.

Strawberry, pepper and tomato farmers, who've sparred with their Mexican counterparts over winter imports for years, argued that the deal does little or nothing to stop Mexican farmers from flooding the USA market with below-cost produce.

Although Canada's annual inflation rate surged to 3.0 percent in July, its highest level in almost seven years, the central bank said it should move back toward 2 percent in early 2019 as the effects of past increases in gasoline prices dissipated.



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