Trudeau, Trump want quick NAFTA deal

Trudeau, Trump want quick NAFTA deal

Trump recently exempted Canada and Mexico from tariffs on steel and aluminum, although he has indicated those tariffs could be imposed if the United States doesn't get a better deal with Canada with the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA).

The United Steelworkers (USW), which represents workers in both Canada and the US, has welcomed the US tariffs, while urging Trump to make Canada's exemption permanent.

Freeland fired back at Trump's threat Thursday, calling it "absolutely unacceptable" to include Canada in steel and aluminum measures and underlining that the country is also the top buyer of US steel.

Trudeau's view has prominent support: A newly released poll of leading economists organized by the University of Chicago has found rare unanimity on the topic, with zero per cent of economists surveyed saying they believe tariffs will help Americans.

The prime minister was touring an aluminum smelter in Alma, Quebec.

"The whole tariff thing relies on making a national security argument", Trudeau said.

Asked whether he trusted the president, Trudeau said Trump has always kept his word to him and has been consistent in doing what he said he would do. "It has a negative impact on the NAFTA talks", he told a news conference Monday.

Donnelly spoke to Reuters as Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau visited the steel city of Hamilton to reassure workers and meet with company CEOs, as part of his week-long tour to defend Canadian jobs.

The northern Ontario steel community of Sault Ste. Marie, Ont., and Regina.

Freeland says Canada won't be bullied into a deal and that NAFTA and the dispute over steel and aluminum tariffs are two separate issues. While the penalties take effect later this month, Trump has encouraged countries to try negotiating exemptions for themselves.

These include: dramatically limiting Canadian and Mexican access to USA government procurement contracts; a 50 percent United States content and 85 percent North American content requirements for automobiles to be tariff-free; and the dismantling of Canadian barriers on dairy and poultry imports.

But both Mexico and Canada have rejected Trump's linkage of the levies to the ongoing NAFTA talks. Quebec has a supply management system regarding dairy, poultry and eggs, which imposes steep tariffs on those products entering the country.

He cited the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement, known as CETA, between Canada and the European Union, as a clear example of how countries and regions can mutually benefit from opening their doors to freer market access.