On NAFTA, important for Trudeau to demonstrate that he stood up to Trump

On NAFTA, important for Trudeau to demonstrate that he stood up to Trump

By Shachi Kurl, Executive Director

The optimist’s view of the ongoing NAFTA negotiation is that we’re into the final stages, heading toward a win-win-win agreement.

And despite stunning, leaked revelations that the U.S. president has no intention of compromising, Canada’s foreign minister Chrystia Freeland said late Friday she believes a deal is within reach. Maybe, maybe not. One thing is certain, whether that agreement comes next week or next month, that’s when Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s crucial test of boosting the pact to his people begins.

Of as much importance will be the speed and style with which he scrambles to the high ground ahead of his detractors in this communications war as the substance of the agreement itself. He’ll need to demonstrate that negotiators kept issues of importance to Canadians — such as the dispute resolution system known as Chapter 19 — front and centre, while reassuring them that unlike Jack from the fairy tale, he did not do a “bad deal,” selling the cow for a handful of beans that may or may not be magic.

For the rest of this piece, please view it on the Ottawa Citizen’s site, where it was initially published.

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