Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau will not visit Washington, DC with the President of Mexico this week to celebrate a new trade deal in North America, his office said Monday, after Canada expressed concern about possible aluminum tariffs. from the United States.
In a Monday morning phone call, Trudeau told Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador that he hoped the talks with United States President Donald Trump would be successful.
López Obrador, who had urged Trudeau to join him, will meet Trump at the White House on Wednesday on his first trip outside of Mexico since he took office 19 months ago.
Trudeau will attend cabinet meetings and a session of parliament in Ottawa, his office said in a statement.
“We wish the best for the United States and Mexico at Wednesday’s meeting,” the statement said.
NEW: Canada officially confirms that Prime Minister Justin Trudeau will not be going to Washington this week for any kind of USMCA celebration. The Mexican president said earlier today, Trudeau would not attend. PMO statement: pic.twitter.com/O0NDvq1snm
– Katie Simpson (@CBCKatie) July 6, 2020
Last week, Trudeau said he was not sure to attend, citing tensions over possible U.S. tariffs on Canadian aluminum. Trudeau also raised concerns about the new coronavirus.
In his call, Trudeau “expressed regret” to López Obrador for not being able to go to Washington, DC, Trudeau’s office said.
Their discussion also referred to the trade agreement between the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) that entered into force last week, efforts to combat the coronavirus pandemic and investment in renewable energy infrastructure.
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The two leaders expressed interest in meeting in person, Trudeau’s office said, without providing further details.
López Obrador said Trudeau was invited to Mexico, and after his call announced that the Canadian Prime Minister had agreed to visit the country “as soon as possible.”
López Obrador said he will undergo a coronavirus test before leaving Mexico on Tuesday, and that he was prepared to have another one in the US if necessary. López Obrador said he plans to return to Mexico from Washington, DC on Thursday.
Reuters news agency