President Trump announced a trade "understanding" with Mexico Monday that could lead to an overhaul of the North American Free Trade Agreement. Mr. Trump said he wants to get rid of the name "NAFTA" entirely, saying it has negative connotations.
The president said they are starting negotiations with Canada. The president said, "we'll see" if Canada can be a part of the deal, or if it will be a part of a separate deal.
Mr. Trump called it a big day for trade, and for the country. The U.S. and Mexico have been negotiating over the NAFTA for months.
Pres. Trump has conference call with Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto to congratulate him on new trade deal: “I thought we would congratulate each other before it got out, & I know we will have a formal news conference in the not-too-distant future."
Mr. Trump, according to the White House press pool, ignored reporters' questions about the legacy of Sen. John McCain, who passed away after a battle with brain cancer on Saturday.
"A big deal looking good with Mexico!" Mr. Trump tweeted Monday morning, making no mention of Canada.
Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto tweeted just before the announcement that he spoke to Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau about the status of NAFTA negotiations and progress the U.S. and Mexico have made, and expressed the importance of his involvement in the negotiations.
Canada points out, however, that its signature is required.
Adam Austen, spokesperson for Chrystia Freeland, Canada's minister of foreign affairs, said, "Canada is encouraged by the continued optimism shown by our negotiating partners. Progress between Mexico and the United States is a necessary requirement for any renewed NAFTA agreement. We are in regular contact with our negotiating partners, and we will continue to work toward a modernized NAFTA. We will only sign a new NAFTA that is good for Canada and good for the middle class. Canada's signature is required."
Mr. Trump has derided NAFTA as the worst trade deal ever signed. But it's taken more than 18 months in office to reach any sort of agreement.