Canada NAFTA fight set to run past latest deadline

President Trump's tough stance on fair trade practices has helped secure an agreement with Mexico, and now it's forcing Canada to come to the negotiation table.

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.

The President imposed tariffs on steel and aluminum from Canada and Mexico in June, and has threatened to bring in additional duties on imported autos as well.

USA 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 Mexican government takes office. The prime minister said it was a quick and cordial encounter and that people shouldn't read too much into it. Under U.S. trade law, the administration is required to submit to Congress a finalized, written agreement 60 days before it intends to sign it. "We will keep working as long as it takes to get to the right deal for Canada", he said.

U.S. President Donald Trump sits behind his desk as he announces a bilateral trade agreement with Mexico to replace the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) at the White House in Washington, U.S., August 27, 2018. "And if we could do it in one deal, we'll do it as one deal - if we do it in two deals, we'll do it in two deals". A spokesman for the U.S. Trade Representative's Office declined to comment.

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Major disagreements remain over Canada's dairy management program, a dispute resolution process and the fate of USA tariffs on metals imports from Canada. The Congress, however, may not approve the revisions if Canada is not to be included in the deal.

Negotiations for possible exemptions for Mexico and Canada from USA steel and aluminum tariffs imposed earlier this year will take place after the new Nafta deal is agreed on, Lighthizer said.

But, he said, "I believe this US-China discussion will go on for a while". "It was an interaction like so many are in the United Nations - quick but cordial".

"We're going to go ahead with Mexico", he added. "There are all sorts of opportunities for me to speak with President Trump and that was not the time". "I think it's important to keep North America together, even if it takes more time" he said.

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