US President Donald Trump warned on Tuesday that he might terminate the NAFTA trade treaty with Mexico and Canada after three-way talks failed to bridge deep differences, Reuters has reported.
The United States, Canada and Mexico wrapped up their first round of talks to revamp the trade pact on Sunday, with little sign of a breakthrough coming. Trump re-opened negotiations of the 1994 treaty out of concern US economic interests were suffering.
“Personally, I don’t think we can make a deal. I think we’ll probably end up terminating NAFTA at some point,” Trump said at a political rally in Phoenix, Arizona.
Suggesting a termination might help jumpstart the negotiations, Trump said, “I personally don’t think you can make a deal without a termination.”
Following Trump’s remarks, Mexican Foreign Minister, Luis Videgaray, tweeted, “No surprises: we’re already in a negotiation. Mexico will remain at the table with serenity, firmness and with the national interest ahead.” In a joint statement issued at the end of five days of negotiations in Washington, the top trade officials from the three countries said Mexico would host the next round of talks from September 1st to 5th.
The talks will move to Canada later in September, then return to the United States in October, with additional rounds planned for later this year, Reuters added.
Shortly after being elected, U.S. President Donald Trump announced his intention to begin renegotiating the terms of NAFTA, seeking to resolve issues with trade outlined during his campaign for the presidency. The leaders of Canada and Mexico have indicated their willingness to work with the Trump administration, and although vague on the exact terms that he will be seeking in a renegotiated NAFTA, Trump has threatened to withdraw from it if negotiations fail.
In July 2017, the Trump administration provided a detailed list of changes that it would like to see to NAFTA. The top priority for the administration is the reduction in the United States’ trade deficit. The administration also called for the elimination of provisions that allowed Canada and Mexico to appeal duties imposed by the United States and limited the ability of the United States to impose import restrictions on Canada and Mexico. The list also voiced concerns about subsidized state-owned enterprises and currency manipulation.
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