Canadian PM, Trudeau to meet US President in Washington on Monday
Trudeau, the leader of Canada’s Liberal Party, played up the need to talk about trade in announcing the visit.
“Strong Canada-U.S. ties help the middle class in both our countries, on Monday, I’ll meet @realDonaldTrump in DC to keep working for that goal,” Trudeau tweeted.
The White House said Trump and Trudeau look forward to “constructive conversation on strengthening the relationship between our two nations.”
The meeting came on the heels of preparatory visits in recent days by Canada’s top cabinet ministers, who have all travelled to Washington to secure Canada’s economic and security ties with the U.S.
Trudeau would have to perform a diplomatic tightrope act in Washington as he faced an administration that has shown willingness to challenge existing free trade agreements.
He needed to safeguard Canada’s privileged access to the U.S. market, with about 75 per cent of Canadian exports going to the U.S.
Canadian Foreign Minister Chrystia Freeland, who met her U.S. counterpart Rex Tillerson on Wednesday said she had been firm with the U.S. secretary of state.
“I made it clear that we would be strongly opposed to any imposition of new tariffs between Canada and the U.S.,; that we felt tariffs on exports would be mutually harmful to both Canada and the U.S.
“If such an idea were ever to come into being, Canada would respond appropriately,’’ Freeland told newsmen in a teleconference call from Washington.
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