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US, Mexico strike tentative NAFTA deal

27 August, 2018, 22:29 | Author: Kristi Dunn
  • U.S. and Mexico make NAFTA breakthrough, increasing chances of final deal

Stocks are rising broadly as the US and Mexico prepare to announce the details of the new trade agreement. A senior US trade official said there are hopes that a final agreement can be reached by Friday.

Nafta reduced most trade barriers between the US, Mexico and Canada, but Trump and other critics say it encouraged US manufacturers to move south of the border to exploit low-wage Mexican labor. It'll either be a tariff on cars or it'll be a negotiated deal.

Canada would continue to negotiate, but would only sign a new agreement that is good for the country, a spokesman for Canadian Foreign Minister Chrystia Freeland said.

The United States and Mexico have reached an "understanding" on several critical trade issues following bilateral talks to renegotiate the North American Free Trade Agreement.

US President Donald Trump, a frequent critic of the existing deal, announced the apparent breakthrough on Monday.

Negotiations on rewriting the three-country NAFTA agreement began about a year ago.

A new NAFTA would need to accepted and ratified by all three countries before it takes effect.

"One way or another we'll have a deal with Canada", Trump said.

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Trump says he will be calling Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.

The White House is also expected to formally notify Congress by the end of this week of its intention to sign a new trade agreement within 90 days.

"I think with Canada, frankly, the easiest thing we can do is to tariff their cars", Trump told the assembled press in the Oval Office on Monday.

She now is on a European trip but Guajardo said last week Freeland had indicated she would be available as soon as the United States and Mexico were ready to move to the next phase. "We'll see what happens", Trump said, adding that Mexico's election was "better than anticipated".

The Mexican peso was up as much as 1% against the USA dollar Monday.

But the president hinted that all might not be smooth sailing from here, suggesting he could cut Ottawa out of the deal reached with Mexico and adding that he wanted to change the agreement's name.

Trump said "we haven't started with Canada yet"-when in fact the USA has negotiated with Canada extensively, though Canada has been excluded from NAFTA talks in recent weeks-and "we'll start negotiations shortly".

"For some time now, (Trump) has been very prudent in referring to Mexicans, or he hasn't said offensive things", Lopez Obrador said. He also reframed the negotiations as two bilateral trade deals. The other was the US proposal for a "sunset clause" within the agreement. It would also require 40% to 45% of the auto to be made by workers earning at least $16 an hour.

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