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President Donald Trump speaks on the telephone via speakerphone with Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto in the Oval Office of the White House on August 27, 2018 in Washington, DC.
President Donald Trump said Wednesday he is optimistic Canada will join the new trade deal the U.S. forged with Mexico that is intended to replace the North American Free Trade Agreement.
“I think Canada very much wants to make the deal,” Trump told reporters at the White House, while adding, “It probably won’t be good at all if they don’t.”
Trump also reiterated his Friday deadline for the U.S.’ northern ally to join the NAFTA replacement, which he coined “The United States-Mexico Trade Agreement” earlier in the week.
“They want to be part of the deal,” Trump said of Canada. “We gave until Friday and I think we are probably on track. We’ll see what happens.”
His remarks followed a roundtable discussion meeting in which he announced a grant for a program supporting drug-free communities.
Canada’s Foreign Minister Chrystia Freeland later said on Wednesday that the NAFTA trade negotiations with the U.S. were at a “very intense moment” and that her country was looking for compromises that were “win-win” for all sides.
“Our officials are meeting now and will be meeting until very late tonight. Possibly they’ll be meeting all night long,” Freeland told reporters after a meeting with U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer. “This is a very intense moment in the negotiations and we’re trying to get a lot of things done very quickly.”