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Home / World News / Justin Trudeau to skip USMCA pact meet with Trump, Obrador in Washington

Justin Trudeau to skip USMCA pact meet with Trump, Obrador in Washington

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau had also expressed concern over having to self-isolate for two weeks on returning from the United States, as is now mandated in Canada.

world Updated: Jul 07, 2020 15:31 IST
Anirudh Bhattacharyya
Anirudh Bhattacharyya
Hindustan Times, Toronto
Canada's Prime Minister Justin Trudeau attends a news conference at Rideau Cottage, as efforts continue to help slow the spread of coronavirus disease (Covid-19) in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada in June  2020.
Canada's Prime Minister Justin Trudeau attends a news conference at Rideau Cottage, as efforts continue to help slow the spread of coronavirus disease (Covid-19) in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada in June 2020. (REUTERS)

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau will skip a meeting organized by American President Donald Trump to celebrate the US Mexico Canada or USMCA pact, a refurbished version of the North American Free Trade Agreement or NAFTA which existed earlier.

Trump, Trudeau and Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador were expected to meet in Washington on Wednesday to mark the enforcement of the new deal, which was championed by Trump. However, Trudeau has turned down the invitation from Trump.

The official version for Trudeau avoiding the Washington trip is that Trudeau is participating in a virtual Cabinet retreat leading up to a session of Parliament where Canada’s Finance Minister Bill Morneau will present a fiscal update relating to the economy and the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic in lieu of a regular budget.

However, Trudeau has been miffed with Trump in recent days. In a media briefing last week, he said, “We’re obviously concerned about the proposed issue of tariffs on aluminum and steel that the Americans have floated recently,” according to the outlet CBC News.

Trudeau had also expressed concern over having to self-isolate for two weeks on returning from the United States, as is now mandated in Canada.

Trudeau spoke to Mexican President Obrador on Monday and “expressed regret that he is unable to travel to Washington D.C. this week and wished President López Obrador a successful meeting with the President of the United States, Donald Trump,” according to a readout issued by the Canadian PMO.

They also “agreed” that the recent entry into force of the new NAFTA will “strengthen the deep economic ties and longstanding friendship between Canada and Mexico, and advance social as well as economic development in both countries.” There was no word on whether Trudeau held a similar call with Trump.

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