Trump stresses desire for quick NAFTA deal in phone chat with Trudeau

Trump stresses desire for quick NAFTA deal in phone chat with Trudeau

U.S. President Donald Trump greets Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau in the Oval Office at the White House in Washington, U.S., October 11, 2017.

"We are too. So we're glad to do it".

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said Canada could use tariffs to fight any "increased pressure" of steel dumping into Canada aimed at circumventing new US restrictions.

Mr. Trudeau said his government is working hard to ensure that the exemptions stay in place and took issue with the U.S. President's decision to use the tariffs as a bargaining chip.

Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland will be in Washington for three days this week - meeting with U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer, Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross, and key members of Congress.

This form of processing allows it to be stamped "made in Canada" and could avoid the USA tariff, which is why the federal enforcement officials will need to identify the country of origin of the original steel, said one industry executive who asked that his name not be used because he is not authorized to speak to the media.

He said he and Trump also "welcomed and encouraged the progress being made on negotiation of the renewed North American Free Trade Agreement" and discussed an opioid crisis affecting both nations. The steel tariff investigation was launched to see the impact of steel imports on USA national security.

Trudeau says he has already spoken with President Donald Trump about foreign steel dumping and is willing to take further action, if necessary, to protect our industry.

Canada is the United States' largest provider of steel and aluminum.

Trudeau's view has prominent support: A poll of leading economists from the University of Chicago has found rare unanimity on the topic, with a newly released survey Monday showing that zero per cent of economists surveyed believe tariffs will help Americans. But relative to bigger industries such as agriculture and auto manufacturing, the steel sector only employs 22,000 direct jobs and represented 2 percent of exports a year ago. Canadian steel is in your tanks.

On the subject of national-security tariffs, Trudeau told CNN: "Canadian aluminum is in your fighter jets". So that whole issue of national security is off the table.

Trudeau made the comments in an early-morning appearance Tuesday on Hamilton television station CHCH before visits to steel mills in the Ontario city. Marie and Regina this week.

Workers in both the aluminum and steel industries face uncertainty over new tariffs.

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