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U.S., Canada Pass Friday Deadline with No NAFTA Deal

The countries agree to continue talks next week rather than break off negotiations, aiming to keep Canada in the three-way trade pact.

Canada has failed to meet President’s Donald Trump administration Friday afternoon, however both countries decided to continue talks rather than break-off trade negotiations completely.

With a deal made with Mexico, U.S president Donald Trump fixed a due date for a deal with Canada, to solve the differences involving a new deal. The date was expected to be on Friday, given a U.S. law that makes the president give at least 90 days’ notice before actually signing the agreement and avoid the upcoming Mexico’s new president the possibility of reopening agreements done by this administration, nevertheless talks may still be on time.

The final text of the agreement may be published as late as 60 days before the signing, which would mean that Mexico’s current president, Peña Nieto, gets to sign the deal. If the agreement doesn’t involve the Canadians, then Congress would continue with a bilateral agreement that Canada is invited to join.

If the deal falls out to Lopez Obrador’s hands, the future president has said publicly he supported the preliminary agreement; and that even though he rejected the deal done in 1994, he would let it pass through the Senate. Although it opposes the position of Lopez Obrador’s economic platform regarding free trade.

The most problematic issues still to discuss are:

  • The concessions by Canada on Agriculture, which president Donald Trump has complained about the restrictions imposed for dairy products coming from the U.S.
  • A dispute-resolution system that allows any of the members to challenge tariffs imposed by the counterpart. A key aspect that the U.S administration wants to erase completely, but Canada does not.
  • Protection of cultural sectors; involving media, television and publications to avoid Canada being overwhelmed by the U.S. media; having an impact directly on French-speaking areas like Quebec, Toronto and Vancouver, among others, which are supporters of Mr. Trudeau, who could pay a political price if abolished, according to political observers.


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