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NAFTA Talks

The NAFTA renegotiation talks completed their third round today. No surprise the reporters favorite topic, the US imposing 220% duty on Bombardier planes. Negotiators from Canada, Mexico and the U.S. were all positive and look forward to round 4 to be held in Washington on Oct 11-15. The negotiators were Canada's Foreign Minister Chrystia Freeland, Mexico's Economy Minister Ildefonso Guajardo (L) and U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer.

The American negoiator Lighthizer said he welcomed the progress made at this point on NAFTA but an enormous amount of work remains to be done. He added that the Bombardier duties case do not affect NAFTA talks. He enthused that negotiations are moving beyond warp speed. 
 
For her part Canada's Freeland was more talkative on Bombardier as you would suspect.  She said that trade with US is balanced  when raising the issue of Boeing and Bombardier with Lighthizer. The USTR is not handling this issue was the response and Freeland has also spoken several times with Secretary of Commerce Ross on the Boeing issue where he spoke directly about Boeing in New York last week. She also added he will be speaking shortly with Wilbur Ross and British counterparts about the Bombardier/Boeing issue.
 
Mexico's Guajardo also said that progress is being achieved on some NAFTA issues and looks towards a more complicated fourth round when 'getting down to brass tacks' and said it is normal to have differences in trade talks (something many people forget).
 
More Highlights From NAFTA III
 
Canada
 
  • These have been very productive past five days
  • Working from consolidated text in most areas
  • Making solid progress on bread-and-butter issues
  • NAFTA timelines are very ambitious
  • Our priority is to get a win – win – win agreement
  • Should have mutual access to procurement contract
 
Mexico
 
  • Progress achieved on some NAFTA issues
  • Normal to have differences in trade talks
  • There will be substantial challenges and next around
  • Round 4 will be complicated because getting down to brass tacks
 
United States
 
  • Welcome progress made at this point on NAFTA but an enormous amount of work remains to be done
  • Small and medium-sized enterprises chapter closed with significant progress being made in many other areas
  • NAFTA talks continue an unprecedented pace with negotiations are moving beyond warp speed
  • Significant progress on digital trade, telecom
  • Both US and Mexico have an interest in raising Mexican wages
 
One expects the next set to be less lovey dovey as countries play to their expected political agendas populated by lobbiests.
 
 
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