Justin Trudeau: New Trade Deal Must Protect Canadian Cultural Sovereignty and Identity

Justin Trudeau: New Trade Deal Must Protect Canadian Cultural Sovereignty and Identity

Justin Trudeau: New Trade Deal Must Protect Canadian Cultural Sovereignty and Identity

In an interview with CNBC's Squawk Alley, Kim Campbell said Canada's preference would be to have dispute resolution, notably Chapter 19, adding that there could be some flexibility from Canada on the issue.

Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland is back in Washington today to resume talks with her US counterpart aimed at bringing Canada into the NAFTA fold.

Trump charges that the 1994 pact, which underpins US$1.2 trillion in trade between the three countries, has caused the loss of hundreds of thousands of U.S.jobs, a statement that most economists dispute.

Canadian and US officials also face tough bargaining in any NAFTA end game.

Talks with Canada aimed at bringing the top United States trading partner into the tentative deal struck with Mexico broke off Friday without success, but the parties agreed to continue talks this week.

Canada and the U.S. need to present a text to the U.S. Congress by October 1 in order to join the deal the Trump administration signed with Mexico last week, trade analysts say.

In response to Trump's tough stance on whether Canada joins the deal or not, Trudeau has incredibly stated he will walk away from a new NAFTA deal unless it meets Canadian needs.

Commercial trucks exit the highway for the Bridge to Canada, in Detroit, Michigan U.S. August 30, 2018. Canada, Mexico and the United States have been re-negotiating the 24-year-old NAFTA deal for more than a year.

He also pledged to defend Canada's supply management system for dairy and poultry - another issue on which Trump has called for major concessions.

"Congress should not interfere w/ these negotiations or I will simply terminate NAFTA entirely & we will be far better off", he wrote.

Trump could face resistance from Congress, which is unlikely to back any deal that doesn't include all three NAFTA partners.

The prime minister staked out Canada's ground as a fresh October 1 deadline and the encroaching American midterm elections cast a shadow over Wednesday's resumption of negotiations in Washington.

But Congress makes the trade rules in the form of trade promotion authority.

US officials told the American Congress on Friday it intends to present them with a trilateral deal.

Strawberry, pepper and tomato farmers, who've sparred with their Mexican counterparts over winter imports for years, argued that the deal does little or nothing to stop Mexican farmers from flooding the US market with below-cost produce.

Throughout the day Friday, it became increasingly clear that Canada and the US would be unable to reach an agreement.

"The government of Canada will not sign a deal unless it's good for Canada and good for Canadians", Canadian Foreign Minister Chrystia Freeland said Friday.

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.

The tone of the NAFTA renegotiation "has painted the U.S. as an antagonist that has to be handled", he says.

The emergence of the cultural exemption as a bone of contention at this stage in the talks surprised those who have followed NAFTA closely.

Canada also wants to maintain exemptions for cultural sector, with Trudeau saying on Tuesday that the exemption "must stand" because, for instance, he wouldn't want to see Canadian TV networks swallowed up. It wouldn't be good for our identity.

The terms as spelled out in the draft deal "would turn North America from a quasi-permanent free-trade area into a quasi-temporary free-trade area", says Stan Veuger, a resident scholar in political economy at the American Enterprise Institute in Washington.

In the news, traders are waiting to hear about a possible escalation of the US-China trade war as a public consultation period on the US administration's intent to impose tariffs on an additional $200 billion of Chinese goods ends today. As the full text has yet to be revealed, it's not clear whether, or in what form, the U.S. -Mexico agreement preserves the process. "It's pretty hard to see how that would work without having Canada in the deal", AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka said Sunday.

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