Donald Trump dumps on Canada, knocks Freeland, threatens tariffs

NAFTA: Lighthizer hints Mexico pact may need to be reopened if delayed

US President Donald Trump claims he rejected a one-on-one meeting with Prime Minister Justin Trudeau regarding NAFTA.

As the NAFTA negotiations are wrapping up, and after a successful renegotiation of the US-South Korea free-trade agreement, the Trump administration's focus appears to be shifting to trade talks with Japan.

Canada is not making concessions needed to reach a deal with the United States for a trilateral NAFTA pact and is running out of time before Washington proceeds with a Mexico-only agreement, a top US official said on Tuesday.

He took aim at the country's dairy tariffs and reiterated his threat to tax Canada's auto industry.

He suggested there is deep mistrust in Chrystia Freeland, the lead Canadian trade negotiator, and her team.

The US administration has recently turned up the heat on Canada, trying to push for a concluded deal by this Sunday or else Canada risks being left out of a revised NAFTA agreement.

Talks have become increasingly hostile.

Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin previously said the president does want to secure a new trade deal with Canada regardless of when or how it happens.

The Canadian leader added existing USA tariffs on Canadian steel and aluminium, which were implemented in late May, would have to be scrapped before Canada felt confident in signing a new NAFTA agreement.

"Yeah I did", Trump said during a news conference amid the United Nations General Assembly in NY.

More news: Tropical Storm Kirk Forms In The Atlantic

President Trump's tough stance on fair trade practices has helped secure an agreement with Mexico, and now it's forcing Canada to come to the negotiation table.

The U.S. dollar rose against a basket of major currencies after the Fed raised interest rates as expected for the eighth time, flagged more rate hikes and signalled the end of the "accommodative" policy era.

That could end up hurting US auto companies that make cars in Canada and buy auto parts from Canada. The spokesperson declined further comment on Trump's news conference.

On the other hand, should Canada decide to join the agreement, the Canadian dollar could go significantly stronger.

Trump made the remarks during a news conference in NY on Wednesday when he was asked if he had, in fact, snubbed Trudeau.

"Canadians, we're polite, we're reasonable, but we also will not be pushed around", Trudeau said at the time. "We don't like their representative very much", Trump added.

"I'm not going to use the name 'NAFTA, '" he said.

The White House now plans to submit a new proposed trade agreement between the USA and Mexico for Congress to begin reviewing as soon as this week. I've never liked it, it's been very bad for the United States.

"I mean Mexico has 25 percent of our oil business now because of NAFTA", said Trump. It's been great for Mexico.

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