Canadians nervous about Trump's threats on NAFTA

MONTREAL (WCAX) "Well, we just began discussions. We are going to have a great relationship with Canada, maybe as good or better than ever before," President Donald Trump said in February when he met with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau at the White House.

Trump and Trudeau met then to talk border connections, immigration, security and NAFTA. The North American Free Trade Agreement was created to improve trade between the U.S., Canada and Mexico. It eliminates most taxes on goods between them.

Canadians are concerned about threats to terminate NAFTA.

"People are really worried about what's going on with NAFTA renegotiation," said Frederick Gagnon, the director of U.S. studies at the University of Quebec at Montreal.

North Country Congresswoman Elise Stefanik recently traveled across the border to talk with Quebec business leaders.

"It was a great opportunity to visit with businesses in the region and hear their questions about ongoing trade negotiations," said Stefanik, R-New York.

She shared her perspective on NAFTA.

"My position when it comes to NAFTA is do no harm, let's modernize and strengthen what works for our domestic economy and jobs in the U.S.," Stefanik said.

Stefanik left the luncheon with ideas to present in Washington, like workforce development programs. She says the cross-border relationship is invaluable.

"Not only nationally but specifically to the region I represent," Stefanik said.

"It was really important to hear a U.S. perspective on the negotiation, especially from a representative that's elected in a district that's right on the Quebec-U.S. border," Gagnon said.

Gagnon said it's important to have these kinds of conferences to get a better understanding.

"The renegotiation process gives us a good opportunity to talk about this to see how we can improve the trade deal between Canada, Mexico and the United States," Gagnon said.

Gagnon says the best way to maintain the successful relationship is to make sure information is communicated to both sides of the border.



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