USA ratchets up pressure on Canada, Mexico, trade partners

Adjust Comment Print

Mr. Trump tweeted Monday morning that Trumka "represented his union poorly on television this weekend".

He added: "It is easy to see why unions are doing so poorly".

Gorka noted Canada has a almost 300-percent tariff on US dairy imports, while the European Union taxes USA vehicle imports at a rate approximately four times higher than the USA tax on European-made cars.

Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland gave a cold shoulder to U.S. President Donald Trump and cozied up instead to her American trade counterpart Friday as Canada's effort to re-enter the North American free-trade fold fell short of meeting its end-of-week deadline.

Just last week, Trump canceled a planned raise for federal employees and proposed rules that will hurt workers ability to save for retirement while simultaneously moving to lavish another tax benefit on the nation's richest with another $100 billion giveaway.

He says on Twitter that a deal will go ahead with or without Canada's involvement, and if Congress tries to intervene, he will "terminate NAFTA entirely".

In a series of tweets on Saturday the president pointed out there is "no political necessity" to keep Canada in the new NAFTA deal.

On Monday, Trump touted the economy, saying 'Our country is doing better than ever before with unemployment setting record lows.' He added, 'The Worker in America is doing better than ever before.

Trump wants to get a trade deal finalized by December 1. In addition, the union leader criticized the president over an Obama-era rule mandating additional overtime pay and for failing to pass legislation to improve US infrastructure, among other issues.

"He hasn't come up with an infrastructure program that could put a lot of us back to work", Trumka said during an interview on "Fox News Sunday".

The deal announced on Monday would, among many other things, require that 40 per cent to 45 per cent of a vehicle be made in a North American country where auto workers made at least $16 an hour - that is, not in Mexico - before qualifying for duty-free status. The talks were constructive, and we made progress.

"We're encouraged by the open dialogue between the Trump and (Mexican President Enrique) Peña Nieto administrations, working toward a modernized trade agreement that recognizes the technology sector's critical role in American economic growth", Shapiro said in a statement. "If we don't make a fair deal for the USA after decades of abuse, Canada will be out", he tweeted.

Speaking on Fox News on Friday, Trumka acknowledged the initial agreement included some improvements over the status quo but also argued "it's pretty hard to see how that would work without having Canada in the deal". However, Canada and the USA did not meet the negotiating deadline, and talks are to continue this week. On Friday, Trump notified Congress he would be signing a revamped deal with Mexico within 90 days, regardless of whether Canada joined or not.

"We're anxious to move forward with it and anxious to have all three countries involved, because NAFTA has had a devastating effect on the working people of this country for the last 25 years", he said.