NAFTA talks resume in Washington with Oct. 1 deadline looming

NAFTA talks resume in Washington with Oct. 1 deadline looming

The governor believes the real, long term solution to these issues is to reduce our regulatory and tax burden in order to better compete with the global market and employ all tools at our disposal to make sure we're protecting the interests of the USA economy.

But despite the public optimism, negotiators face a tough task ahead.

Canada's cultural exemption was absent from the Trump administration's list of negotiating objectives released before the start of the talks.

Though the USA president often threatens to withdraw from NAFTA, the latest pledges are piling up pressure on negotiators who are trying to wrap up more than a year's worth of talks and strike a deal that could be signed before December 1.

Trump lashed out at Canada after talks last week failed to yield a final deal.

On NAFTA, Trump began his Labor Day holiday on Monday by attacking Richard Trumka, the head of the AFL-CIO, America's largest union umbrella group, who said on "Fox News Sunday" that "it's pretty hard to see" how NAFTA works without Canada.

Canada had agreed to grant US and other foreign dairy producers greater access to its market during negotiations over the ill-fated Trans-Pacific Partnership, which Trump withdrew the United States from during his first days in office.

He called NAFTA "a very stupid deal".

Canada wants a permanent exemption from Trump's steel and aluminum tariffs and the threat of auto tariffs to be removed.

"We can't imagine a situation in which an American TV company or network could come up and buy radio stations or buy CTV, for example", Trudeau said Wednesday in an interview with CHED.

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The bombast of the two leaders contrasted with the insistence of negotiators that the mood inside the room was constructive as talks hit what is being described as an intense phase.

The updated deal between Mexico and the United States includes new clauses on intellectual property, digital trade and investor disputes. If the Trump administration meets congressional objectives for a trade deal they can fast-track a new NAFTA through Congress without lawmaker changes. A public comment period wraps up Thursday and people familiar with the White House deliberations last week said the US president is eager to move soon after that. The US has reportedly eliminated the Chapter 19 provision in the agreement with Mexico, but Canada has insisted on its retention.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is defending NAFTA's dispute resolution mechanism as necessary in a world where the president of the United States "doesn't always follow the rules".

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 haven't seen whole chapters of the thing. "You can't fix NAFTA without fixing issues with Canada", said Senator Ron Wyden, the top Democrat on the Senate Finance Committee, which oversees trade.

Sources familiar with Canada's bargaining position insist Ottawa's push to maintain the cultural exemption has remained unresolved between the two neighbours. "That would not be good for Canada, it would not be good for our identity, it would not be good for our sovereignty". As long as other countries levy tariffs on USA produced goods, we must also have the ability to do the same to ensure fairness to American companies and workers.

In the USA, businesses, farmers, unions and Congress insistent that there must be a three-nation agreement.

Over the weekend, Teamsters President Richard Trumka told Fox News there is no NAFTA without Canada.

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau indicated on Tuesday that Canada would not compromise on key demands at high-level talks this week with the United States to update the North American Free Trade Agreement.

"The president needs to take a look at the Constitution - it gives Congress authority over trade. The president can not pull America out of NAFTA without Congress's permission", Wyden said.

Trump is under pressure from Republicans to preserve NAFTA as a deal among all three North American countries, but the president showed signs of chafing at the pressure from Congress.

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