Economy

Canada Not Making 'Essential' Trade Concessions, According to Lighthizer

Canada Not Making 'Essential' Trade Concessions, According to Lighthizer

"We need a three-way auto agreement", Hinrichs said, noting that the deal struck last month between the United States and Mexico could serve as a basis for a more complete agreement that includes Canada.

Lighthizer said the US wants to see the three-way pact stay intact and remains committed to keeping Canada in the deal now or to let it join later. On tariffs, Canada wants protection from so-called Section 232 national security measures the Trump administration has imposed on steel and aluminum imports from Canada and other countries.

United States and Canadian negotiators have spent more than a month trying to resolve remaining differences after Washington sealed a tentative deal with Mexico City which they intend to sign by December 1, when a new government takes office.

Thomas Bollyky, a former US trade negotiator, said there is nothing legally stopping Canada from joining the trade pact after Congress receives the text. "We will keep working as long as it takes to get to the right deal for Canada", he said.

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President Donald Trump said Wednesday that he rejected a meeting request from Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau amid a bitter NAFTA renegotiation. Another sticking point is Canada's protected dairy industry, which isn't in the current deal but where the USA wants concessions. Some have warned that U.S. trade law won't allow a November 30 vote on a U.S. -Mexico deal, because the Trump administration began the process seeking a trilateral one.

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But, he said, "I believe this US-China discussion will go on for a while".

MacNaughton made the comments in response to a question about whether Canada might simply call Trump's bluff and make a take-it-or-leave-it offer, daring Trump to carry out his tariff threat. "I think our view is that now we'll turn to that as the next stage".

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The auto industry is key to Nafta and the free trade deal is critical to the North American supply chain.

"I don't think there's anything to read into it", Trudeau said. However, if anything that might add more pressure on the U.S., which has squeezed a good deal out of Mexico.

Trudeau also downplayed a brief handshake with Trump at a luncheon Tuesday, where the USA president remained seated despite standing to greet other leaders. "I think there's a possibility there to build on what they agreed".

He added: "We're sort of running out of time".

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It is, however, highly unlikely the Guards will strike any of its foes directly and risk setting off a regional conflict. They talk of war with Iran as inevitable, and dream of drawing America into such a war to even up the odds.