High level NAFTA preparation meetings set for Ottawa on Wednesday




High level NAFTA preparation meetings set for Ottawa on Wednesday
High level NAFTA preparation meetings set for Ottawa on Wednesday

Canada’s ambassador to Washington will be in Ottawa Wednesday for a series of high level discussions with Canadian officials to prepare for the resumption of NAFTA negotiations.

David MacNaughton is expected to sit down with members of the Prime Minister’s Office — including Chief of Staff Katie Telford — and trade officials to discuss strategy and positions, according to a senior source with direct knowledge of the situation.

The meetings are meant to make certain everyone is prepared and on the same page when formal talks with the U.S. and Mexico resume.

Dates for trilateral meetings have not yet been set, but face-to-face-to-face discussions could start up as early as next week.

Wednesday’s meeting is expected to remain at the officials’ level, so Foreign Affairs Minster Chrystia Freeland will not be attending.

Canada must be prepared for a fast-moving endgame in the trade talks if the U.S. and Mexico try to make good on pledges to see significant progress on a renegotiated NAFTA by Labour Day.