Finance

Trump Confirms Rejecting Trudeau's Meeting Invite: 'I Told Him 'Forget About It''

Trump Confirms Rejecting Trudeau's Meeting Invite: 'I Told Him 'Forget About It''

During a rare press conference today, President Donald Trump was asked by a Fox News reporter if he'd rejected a one-on-one meeting with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. "I've told him forget about it", Trump remarked Wednesday during a news conference on the sidelines of the U.N. General Assembly.

Trump, who wants major changes to the 1994 treaty, has already concluded a text with Mexico and is threatening to leave out Canada unless it signs up by this Sunday. "That's the mother lode, that's the big one".

"We're thinking about taxing cars coming in from Canada", he said.

The current state of Canada's relationship with the United State due to the current NAFTA debate has been a rocky one, to say the least.

In August, Canadian Minister of Foreign Affairs, Chrystia Freeland, confirmed that no NAFTA agreement was reached with the US.

"If it doesn't happen by the end of the week, we'll just keep working away and trying to get the best deal for Canada", David MacNaughton told a Toronto event arranged by Politico Canada.

Trump had kind words for incoming left-wing President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, calling him "great". The president said it would be called "USM", for the US and Mexico, instead of "USMC", and offered blunt criticism of the Canadian team engaged in the talks.

But the USA leader criticised Canada's trade negotiators and cast doubt on the chances of reaching an agreement on a rewrite of the North American Free Trade Agreement (Nafta), again threatening to impose tariffs on all auto imports.

If differences with Ottawa can not be resolved by then, the Trump administration will ask Congress to approve a Mexico-only deal, he said.

"Yeah, I did", he told a news conference in NY when asked by a reporter whether he had rejected a one-on-one meeting with Mr Trudeau.

That could end up hurting US auto companies that make cars in Canada and buy auto parts from Canada.

In response, Trudeau's office released a statement saying that no meeting was requested.

Trudeau's interactions with the mercurial USA president have been a subject of great curiosity over the course of his three days at the General Assembly.

The Americans have imposed a deadline of September 30 to reach a deal.

The official declined to be named because the matter has not yet been made public. Another sticking point is Canada's protected dairy industry, which isn't in the current deal but where the USA wants concessions. "I think Canada would like to be in the agreement, I think the USA would like them in the agreement", he said.

"We're going to go ahead with Mexico", he added.