NAFTA On The Docket For Trump’s First 100 Days [VIDEO]

NAFTA On The Docket For Trump’s First 100 Days [VIDEO]

NAFTA On The Docket For Trump’s First 100 Days [VIDEO]

With Inauguration Day landing on a Friday, and all of the pomp and ceremony to go with it, followed by a weekend, the real work for the new Trump administration begins today. Though they have been plenty busy over the weekend, laying the groundwork for the next 100 days. And right on the top of the list? NAFTA.

President Trump makes remarks after swearing in senior staff, January 22, 2017 (photo: AFP/Getty Images)
During the swearing in of the new administration’s senior staff, Trump was very direct about wanting to tackle renegotiating NAFTA.

“Anybody ever hear of NAFTA,” Trump said during a White House swearing-in of several top administration officials including senior adviser Kellyanne Conway. “I ran a campaign somewhat based on NAFTA, on immigration and security at the border. And Mexico has been terrific.”

The president will meet on Jan. 31 with Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto, according to the White House.

The president is also expected to meet soon with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, whose country is also a partner in NAFTA.

Trump has blamed the three-nation trade pact for disadvantaging American workers and leading companies to move out of the United States.

Trump also said that he is going be discussing border security with Mexico. And now that the Trump administration is a reality, President Peña Nieto sounds willing to work with him – but it might come at his own political cost.

According to a statement released by the Mexican government, Peña Nieto told Trump on Saturday that he hopes to work together “with a focus on respect for the sovereignty of both nations and shared responsibility.”

There is deep concern here that some of Trump’s campaign threats — such as undertaking large-scale deportations and renegotiating trade deals — could send Mexico into an economic tailspin. Mexican officials are keen to demonstrate good will and to short-circuit any U.S. actions that could further unsettle the Mexican economy.

Mexico’s peso went into a steady decline against the dollar last year as Trump rose in the polls, and dropped to new lows following his election.

Peña Nieto’s approval ratings have also fallen at a swift rate — down to 12% last week — in part because he has been seen as placating Trump.

And reportedly, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is a little nervous about having to deal with the Trump administration as well.

President Donald Trump’s “America first” inauguration speech prompted Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to make an emergency conference call Friday night to his provincial and territorial counterparts.

Trudeau was reportedly trying to convince Canadian premiers that his Liberal government is prepared to meet the formidable trade challenges that a Trump presidency presents, most importantly renegotiating the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA).

A shakeup of the status quo is not necessarily a bad thing. It remains to be seen if Trump’s vision of renegotiating NAFTA for the United States’ benefit will be able to entice Mexico and Canada to sign back on.

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