NAFTA: Canada prepared to play deadline spoiler in talks

NAFTA: Canada prepared to play deadline spoiler in talks

Postby Oscar » Sat Sep 15, 2018 11:34 am

Canada prepared to play deadline spoiler in NAFTA talks: source - NUMEROUS INTERNAL LINKS

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Mexico and U.S. threaten to exclude Canada if no deal reached by Oct. 1

Katie Simpson · CBC News · Posted: Sep 14, 2018 4:00 AM ET | Last Updated: September 14

A source told CBC News that pressure to meet an Oct. 1 deadline that would satisfy the United States and Mexico "is not a good enough reason," for Canada to be forced into a fast finish in the ongoing NAFTA negotiations. (Judi Bottoni/Associated Press)

In the face of mounting pressure to wrap up NAFTA negotiations by the end of the month, a senior source suggests Canada is comfortable with missing that deadline.

The source who spoke to CBC News on background, due to the sensitivity of the talks, said the external political pressure "is not a good enough reason," for Canada to be forced into a fast finish.

Mexican negotiators are pushing for an agreement to be formally signed by the leaders of all three countries before Dec.1, the day Mexico's new president, Andrés Manuel López Obrador, takes office.

If outgoing president Enrique Pena Nieto signs the agreement, it will, among other things, give AMLO some domestic political cover for unpopular aspects of the pact.

In order for that Dec. 1 deadline to be met, a series of legal hurdles in the U.S. must be cleared first.

The next step in that process is getting American lawmakers the text of a proposed agreement before Oct. 1, to begin a formal review.

The source said Canada is willing to try to accommodate the timeline, but is prepared to keep talking past the end of this month.

U.S. President Donald Trump has repeatedly threatened to morph NAFTA into a bilateral agreement between the U.S. and Mexico, if Canada is unwilling to sign on to a deal on his terms.

Last month, Trump announced the U.S. and Mexico had reached an agreement in principle.

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