Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and wife Sophie Gregoire Trudeau depart Ottawa on Tuesday, Oct. 10, 2017, en route to Washington, D.C.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and wife Sophie Gregoire Trudeau depart Ottawa on Tuesday, Oct. 10, 2017, en route to Washington, D.C.
Photo Credit: PC / Sean Kilpatrick

Trudeau heads to Washington for crucial meetings on NAFTA


In a sign that Ottawa is getting increasingly nervous about the future of its crucial trade relationship with the United States, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is off to Washington to launch a charm offensive on U.S. lawmakers and the country’s volatile president.

Trudeau, flanked by a delegation of his top ministers and aids responsible for the foreign affairs and international trade files, is arriving in Washington D.C. for meetings with President Donald Trump and pro-trade American lawmakers, amid concerns the talks on renegotiating the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) might collapse.

The mood at the talks between Canada, Mexico and the U.S. has soured as the negotiators have failed so far to make significant progress even on the issues that were considered the easiest to resolve.

In addition, the U.S. is expected to introduce its most contentious demands at the upcoming fourth round of negotiations.

Then there is the festering dispute over softwood lumber and the 300 per cent duty that the U.S. Department of Commerce has slapped on the Canadian plane maker Bombardier over the alleged subsidies the company receives from the federal and provincial governments.

On Wednesday morning, Trudeau and Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland will meet with members of the influential House Committee on Ways and Means, hoping to build an alliance with pro-free trade lawmakers.

In the afternoon, Trudeau will meet with Trump for a tête-a-tête meeting followed by an expanded bilateral meeting, according to the Prime Minister’s Office.

The meetings in Washington, ahead of Trudeau’s trip to Mexico, come as the biggest U.S. business lobby is starting to sound the alarm.

The head of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce expressed concern Tuesday that the negotiations have been designed to fail, the Canadian Press reported.

Tom Donohue singled out his own country’s proposals — for auto parts, for dispute resolution, for Buy American procurement rules, and for a sunset clause that could terminate NAFTA after five years.

“There are several poison pill proposals still on the table that could doom the entire deal…. All of these proposals are unnecessary and unacceptable,” Donohue said, according to a prepared text.

“Ladies and gentlemen, we’ve reached a critical moment. And the chamber has had no choice but ring the alarm bells.”

With files from The Canadian Press

Tagged with: , , ,
Posted in International, Politics

Do you want to report an error or a typo? Click here!

@*@ Comments

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

 characters available

Note: By submitting your comments, you acknowledge that Radio Canada International has the right to reproduce, broadcast and publicize those comments or any part thereof in any manner whatsoever. Radio Canada International does not endorse any of the views posted. Your comments will be pre-moderated and published if they meet netiquette guidelines.

Netiquette »

When you express your personal opinion in an online forum, you must be as courteous as if you were speaking with someone face-to-face. Insults and personal attacks will not be tolerated. To disagree with an opinion, an idea or an event is one thing, but to show disrespect for other people is quite another. Great minds don’t always think alike—and that’s precisely what makes online dialogue so interesting and valuable.

Netiquette is the set of rules of conduct governing how you should behave when communicating via the Internet. Before you post a message to a blog or forum, it’s important to read and understand these rules. Otherwise, you may be banned from posting.

  1.’s online forums are not anonymous. Users must register, and give their full name and place of residence, which are displayed alongside each of their comments. reserves the right not to publish comments if there is any doubt as to the identity of their author.
  2. Assuming the identity of another person with intent to mislead or cause harm is a serious infraction that may result in the offender being banned.
  3.’s online forums are open to everyone, without regard to age, ethnic origin, religion, gender or sexual orientation.
  4. Comments that are defamatory, hateful, racist, xenophobic, sexist, or that disparage an ethnic origin, religious affiliation or age group will not be published.
  5. In online speak, writing in ALL CAPS is considered yelling, and may be interpreted as aggressive behaviour, which is unpleasant for the people reading. Any message containing one or more words in all caps (except for initialisms and acronyms) will be rejected, as will any message containing one or more words in bold, italic or underlined characters.
  6. Use of vulgar, obscene or objectionable language is prohibited. Forums are public places and your comments could offend some users. People who use inappropriate language will be banned.
  7. Mutual respect is essential among users. Insulting, threatening or harassing another user is prohibited. You can express your disagreement with an idea without attacking anyone.
  8. Exchanging arguments and opposing views is a key component of healthy debate, but it should not turn into a dialogue or private discussion between two users who address each other without regard for the other participants. Messages of this type will not be posted.
  9. Radio Canada International publishes contents in five languages. The language used in the forums has to be the same as the contents we publish. The usage of other languages, with the exception of some words, is forbidden. Messages that are off-topic will not be published.
  10. Making repetitive posts disrupts the flow of discussions and will not be tolerated.
  11. Adding images or any other type of file to comments is forbidden. Including hyperlinks to other websites is allowed, as long as they comply with netiquette. Radio Canada International  is in no way responsible for the content of such sites, however.
  12. Copying and pasting text written by someone else, even if you credit the author, is unacceptable if that text makes up the majority of your comment.
  13. Posting any type of advertising or call to action, in any form, to Radio Canada International  forums is prohibited.
  14. All comments and other types of content are moderated before publication. Radio Canada International  reserves the right to refuse any comment for publication.
  15. Radio Canada International  reserves the right to close a forum at any time, without notice.
  16. Radio Canada International  reserves the right to amend this code of conduct (netiquette) at any time, without notice.
  17. By participating in its online forums, you allow Radio Canada International to publish your comments on the web for an indefinite time. This also implies that these messages will be indexed by Internet search engines.
  18. Radio Canada International has no obligation to remove your messages from the web if one day you request it. We invite you to carefully consider your comments and the consequences of their posting.


3 comments on “Trudeau heads to Washington for crucial meetings on NAFTA
  1. Peter Ashcroft says:

    Trade relations with the United States, with Trump at the helm, is unpredictable, with his Fortress America attitude. I hope this ‘playboy’ loses at the next election if The United States is to reverse this isolationism in 2020

    • ursula wagner says:

      Dear Mr. Ashcroft,

      I hope for you and your country, that Theresa May doesn`t make one of her
      intentions come true,
      after the Brexit joining NAFTA.

  2. Jose Padilla says:

    Certainly, this is not the time and the circumstances to make any deal in the way it was expected. It is probably a good thing even if that looks ugly. And it will probably look ugly for a little while. The wind of the economy doesn’t depend on the blow of one player or component. The economy of a nation, or throughout the world is very unpredictable. At his point in time, things could not be as worst as they look like.