Published: Thu, May 11, 2017
Markets | By Noel Gibbs

Trump ready to end NAFTA if he can't renegotiate

Trump ready to end NAFTA if he can't renegotiate

Senate confirmation of Robert Lighthizer as Trump's nominee for US trade representative, who would lead the United States in NAFTA talks, has taken longer than anticipated.

White House spokesman Sean Spicer said that while Trump is open to renegotiation, he is serious about a possible exit from the trade deal.

US President Donald Trump told the leaders of Mexico and Canada that he would not pull out of the NAFTA treaty for now, but will swiftly begin renegotiating the trilateral deal with them, a White House statement said.

Following his decision to not withdraw the United States from NAFTA this week, President Donald Trump described himself as both "a nationalist and a globalist", triggering chatter online about what his reversal means for his "America first" campaign rhetoric.

After more than two decades, NAFTA is tightly woven into the economies of the U.S., Canada and Mexico. And it's very hard when you have a relationship, it's very much something that would not be a nice act.

Meanwhile, dairy farmers continue to cast a wary eye across the border and are preparing for eventual trade negotiations.

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"You know I was really ready and psyched to terminate NAFTA", Trump said. "I like them very much".

The president's action came as a relief to NAFTA supporters, including those within Trump's own party.

"Scrapping NAFTA would be a disastrously bad idea".

Upon news earlier Wednesday that the Trump administration was considering a withdrawal from the agreement, some Republicans urged caution. "It would hurt American families at the check-out, and it would cripple American producers in the field and the office". Declaring a withdrawal under Article 2205 doesn't automatically cancel the deal.

Trudeau refused to rule out retaliatory measures in response to the USA moves, but he said both he and Trump prefer to keep relations "positive and co-operative".

That's Leeds-Grenville-Thousand Islands and Rideau Lakes MP Gord Brown's assessment of what so far looks like a trade war averted. Corn growers could lose a significant export market if Mexico chose to go shopping elsewhere. John McCain of Arizona. Trump "shouldn't abandon this vital trade agreement".

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News of the possible U.S. pullout from Nafta rattled financial markets on Wednesday. In the early 90s, the United States used to enjoy a tiny trade surplus with its southern neighbor but by 2016 that had transformed into a deficit totaling $63 billion. In between, both imports and exports grew sharply. Exports grew five-and-a-half times, from $41.5 billion to $230 billion. They laugh at us.

"Some saw the threat as posturing by Trump to gain leverage over Mexico and Canada as he tries to negotiate changes to the deal. To build upon that track record, we need to address unfinished business such as the remaining tariff and nontariff trade barriers that Canada has pursued".

It also states NAFTA is responsible for "waves" of illegal immigration and the closure of "tens of thousands of factories and manufacturing establishments" in the U.S.

Tariffs are not the only barrier to trade, though.

Farm Groups are breathing a sigh of relief, now that President Trump has decided not to withdraw the USA from the North American Free Trade Agreement.

"My practice is to comment on things we've actually done or are doing as opposed to commenting on rumors", Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross told reporters at an unrelated White House briefing Wednesday evening. But maybe, he says, he'll change his mind again and rip it up if he can't get a good deal. In other words: no big deal! Those were all components of the Trans-Pacific Partnership, which covered a dozen countries including Mexico and Canada.

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As he reached his 99th day in office on Friday, Trump moved on from NAFTA to focus on gun rights.

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