NAFTA negotiations continue in Washington as Friday goal nears

Stocks surge to new heights on NAFTA hopes

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President Donald Trump said Monday the US and Mexico had reached a bilateral trade "understanding" that could lead to an overhaul - or maybe the demise - of the three-country North American Free Trade Agreement.

A senior administration official called the new U.S. -Mexico trade agreement "better in all respects" than "NAFTA 1.0".

For Trump, striking a new trade deal with Mexico - and possibly Canada - would be welcomed as a political win for Republicans ahead of the crucial USA midterm elections this fall.

Ricketts said he emphasized the importance of NAFTA during the visit, and has previously encouraged US officials to finalize an agreement.

On her way into more talks with the Americans, Freeland said that her team had worked into the evening last night on some of the proposals still in play and she would be discussing Canada's position with her counterpart, Robert Lighthizer.

"I continue to be encouraged by the good conversations we are having and the progress we are making", she said while exiting a meeting with Lighthizer, saying the two planned to meet again Wednesday afternoon.

It is the first time Freeland has met with her US counterparts in Washington since May.

"I think Canada very much wants to make the deal".

Serious differences remain on other issues, including the dairy sector, how to settle disputes and a USA proposal for a sunset clause.

The outlines of a NAFTA 2.0 are now on paper, including provisions on auto trade, tougher worker protections and a provision to review the deal every six years.

Earlier on August 29, the Trump administration's own anti-dumping duties on Canadian paper, used in books and newsprint, were thrown out by the U.S. International Trade Commission.

But first, he said, he would give Canada a chance to get back in - "if they'd like to negotiate fairly".

"The sooner we can have these reassurances, the better position we are as MI agriculture, especially as we move into our harvest season", Kran said.

Two of Donald Trump's top lieutenants turned up the heat on Canada to open up the protected sector that the US president has repeatedly attacked.

Pat Toomey released a statement Tuesday regarding President Donald Trump's announcement the US and Mexico had agreed to change key parts of NAFTA.

Canada's currency will push higher in the wake of a preliminary trade agreement between the United States and Mexico, according to BMO Financial Group.

The new deal requires 75 per cent of the value of a vehicle to be produced in the United States or Mexico, up from the NAFTA threshold of 62.5 per cent.

Trump pulled the US out of the TPP, calling it a bad deal.

Hammering something out before the end of day on Friday sets up a scenario where a potential deal could be signed before Mexico's government changes hands later this fall.

Freeland said on Tuesday that Mexico's concessions on auto rules of origin and labor rights was a breakthrough.

If auto content and wage agreements go forward with Canada on board as well, they could stem the flow of auto sector jobs to lower wage jurisdictions, Unifor president Jerry Dias said. "We're not going to stand for that", he said.

The United States and Mexico have reached a trade agreement that is more than a handshake deal but not quite a treaty.

To make that happen, given the 90-day USA notice requirement, signatures are needed on an agreement by the end of August - ie.

The 24-year-old NAFTA, which also includes Mexico and is integral to the continent's economy, has been under renegotiation for more than 12 months.

On a brighter side, Mexico as agreed to make concession on its auto industry.

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