U.S. president cheers new USMCA trade deal, heralds end of NAFTA era

President Donald Trump said that the tension between the U.S. and Canada is over

U.S. President Donald Trump is taking a victory lap at the White House, cheering Sunday’s last-minute free trade deal, pronouncing the death of the 25-year-old North American Free Trade Agreement — and playing down “tensions” with Justin Trudeau.

Trump acknowledged he and the prime minister have been at odds in recent weeks — but said it was all because of NAFTA, and is over now that the two countries have agreed to a new continental trade pact, christened the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement.

READ MORE: Out with NAFTA, in with USMCA: Canada inks new trade deal

“There was a lot of tension between he and I … but it all ended around 12 o’clock last night” when the new deal was reached, Trump told a news conference in the White House Rose Garden.

“The only problem with Justin is he loves his people, and he’s fighting hard for his people. I think Justin’s a good person who’s doing a good job.”

Trump also refused to be pinned down on whether he intends to ease Section 232 tariffs on Canadian exports of steel and aluminum, saying at once that the tariffs remain in place, but they won’t be necessary as long as Canada and Mexico honour the terms of the new agreement.

The tariff measure “is still staying where it is,” he said, adding, “but I don’t think you will need to use the tariffs.”

Trump, flanked by trade ambassador Robert Lighthizer, adviser and son-in-law Jared Kushner and a who’s who of his inner circle, called the new agreement the most important trade deal the U.S. has ever made.

The deal, reached late Sunday, will govern $1.2 trillion US in trade, making it the biggest agreement in the country’s history, and marks the end of an era during which the U.S. has been “treated so badly” on trade by other countries around the world, the president said.

He said the new deal treats American workers with ”fairness and reciprocity,” unlike NAFTA, which he again described as the worst deal ever agreed to by the United States.

And he cheered the fact it will give American farmers and dairy producers greater access to markets in Canada and Mexico, protect auto manufacturing jobs and encourage innovation on U.S. soil.

Trump said he spoke earlier today with Trudeau and outgoing Mexican president Enrique Pena Nieto, and also extended thanks to Pena Nieto’s replacement, Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador.

The Canadian Press


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Team improves access to addiction, mental health supports

Service provides expanded on-call consultation

Pinpointing innovations

How precision spraying system helps Kings Lake Hutterite Colony save time, products and water

Hang up on the phone fraudsters

If the phone call seems kind of crazy…

County gravel pit requires wetland solution

County of Wetaskiwin hears report about wetlands at Hilgartner pit

Leaders of Tomorrow kicks off Jan. 16

Nominations accepted for youth recognition until Feb. 22

VIDEO: Trudeau insists Iran respect families’ wishes when it comes to burials

All 176 people on board the Ukraine International Airlines flight PS752 were killed

Canadian law firm launches class action on behalf of Iran flight victims

Flight 752 was shot down by Iran shortly after take off

Energy companies owe more than double the tax to Alberta municipalities

Survey says communities are owed $173 million — up 114% since last spring

No gondola from Banff to Mount Norquay, feds say

Parks Canada dismisses proposal for gondola, Grizzly Pavilion and boardwalks

U.S. officials confirm first case of Wuhan coronavirus near Seattle

The U.S. is the fifth country to report seeing the illness

Nine times lucky? Alberta’s Northern Cree takes another shot at Grammy gold

The group originates from the Saddle Lake Cree Nation in northern Alberta

Tax revolt? Unpaid taxes from energy companies to Alberta towns more than double

The association says they are owed a total of $173 million

New post-secondary funding model in Alberta tied to performance measures

By 2022, up to 40 per cent of post-secondary funding could be linked to performance

Alberta bulldog breeder ordered to refund B.C. buyer over puppy’s behaviour

Tribunal ruled a verbal agreement to send a new dog superseded the written contract

Most Read