Published: Fri, September 14, 2018
Money | By Arnold Ball

Freeland to resume NAFTA negotiations with Lighthizer Tuesday in Washington

Freeland to resume NAFTA negotiations with Lighthizer Tuesday in Washington

Republican Tom Reed, a member of the Committee of ways and means of the House of representatives, said in a television interview broadcast on Sunday that provide a larger market access to u.s. dairy producers could appease president Donald Trump.

When asked about Kudlow's comments, Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland said bluntly: "He's not at the negotiating table".

Meanwhile, despite the "several" issues still in dispute, there is strong will on the US side, especially, to wrap up the talks by Friday, trade lawyer Dan Ujczo said Monday.

Ottawa and Washington are trying to reach an agreement that could be submitted to the U.S. Congress by month's end.

Trump has claimed that the 1994 pact has caused the loss of hundreds of thousands of U.S.jobs, something that most economists dispute. A bilateral deal announced by the United States and Mexico on Monday was a breakthrough that infused renewed optimism around a new NAFTA.

"The U.S. knows what Canada's tough issues are, so they're going to hold those to the end, and squeeze out concessions on every other issue they can", said Ujczo, who is regularly briefed on the talks. "We'll see what happens, but in any event, things are working out very well".

Teamsters Canada represents the interests of 125, 000 workers in all sectors of activity, including 5000 in the dairy industry.

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She said the talks were at a point where discussing them face-to-face with the prime minister "is absolutely essential". "It can't be renamed something or called something else", Perdue said when asked about dairy concessions needed to reach a NAFTA deal, referring to a new milk class created a year ago by Canada to price milk ingredients such as protein concentrates, skim milk and whole milk powder. "There are nearly two dozen chapters closed" in the NAFTA deal including reducing red tape on cross-border trade, he said on Monday.

It seems nearly a given now that any trade deal Canada strikes with the United States will have to offer up more American access to the Canadian dairy market.

Although issues related to autos, such as the USA push to boost North American content in vehicles, have been a major part of the negotiations, other issues, particularly a desire for more US access to Canada's dairy market and Canadian insistence on maintaining NAFTA's dispute resolution system, are believed to be some of the major remaining sticking points.

Daniel Ujczo, a USA trade lawyer who has worked for both the Canadian and the US governments, rejects the notion that Canada and the United States are at a stalemate.

To save that mechanism, Ottawa plans to change one rule that effectively blocked American farmers from exporting ultrafiltered milk, an ingredient in cheesemaking, to Canada, the Globe and Mail reported, citing sources.

Trudeau meets on Tuesday with the Dairy Farmers of Canada, which suspect he might be ready to sell them out.

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