President Donald Trump spoke with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on Thursday, the day that the United States announced tariffs on Canada, and told Trudeau that there would be a “fair deal” or “no deal at all” on NAFTA.
“The United States has been taken advantage of for many decades on trade. Those days are over,” President Trump said in a Thursday evening statement on the renegotiation of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA).
Trump conveyed this message to Trudeau during a Thursday phone call, saying, “The United State will agree to a fair deal, or there will be no deal at all.”
Thursday morning President Trump announced that the United States would reinstate previously delayed section 232 tariffs on steel and aluminum from Canada, Mexico, and the European Union. The U.S. had delayed the national security-based tariffs on Canada and Mexico while the three nations renegotiated the NAFTA trade deal.
“The current NAFTA is a seriously flawed trade deal, and the Trump Administration is committed to getting the best possible trade agreement for all Americans,” U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer said in a May 14 statement regarding progress on the “intensive, continuous discussions to renegotiate NAFTA.”
There have been seven rounds of NAFTA negotiations since August 2017.
After the seventh round of trade negotiations, Lighthizer said that the negotiations “have not made the progress that many had hoped in this round.” He expressed hope that they would reach agreements “on new issues like digital trade, labor and environment, intellectual property, and much more” and urged that negotiations move more quickly.
Last week Trump said Canada and Mexico “have been very difficult to deal with” in the trade negotiations. He called the two countries “spoiled” by bad trade deals made under previous administrations. Trump added, “I will tell you – in the end, we win.”
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