Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is set to meet the United States President Donald Trump on Monday Feb. 13, 2017, at the White House in Washington, D.C.
This will be the first face-to-face encounter between the two, previously only having two telephone conversations since Trump became President.
A statement from the White House says that the two leaders “look forward to a constructive conversation on strengthening the relationship between our two nations.”
— Richard Madan (@RichardMadan) February 9, 2017
The main discussion will focus on the trade relations between Canada and the U.S., particularly on Trump’s plans to renegotiate the North American Free Trade Agreement—also known as NAFTA. The President wants a “renovation of NAFTA or a brand new NAFTA,” and described the 23-year-old agreement as “a catastrophe for our jobs and our country.” The U.S. and Mexico have a large trade deficit while Canada and the U.S. have a a small surplus in trade.
Trudeau and Trump will also discuss a Republican proposal to impose a “border adjustment tax” on foreign imports, along with talks focusing on Russia, the fight against terrorists, improving middle-class jobs, and Canada’s contribution to the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO).
Trudeau is also likely to raise the issue of the problems that have arisen from Trump’s immigration ban, which had barred citizens from 7 countries from entering the U.S. before being temporarily halted by Federal Judge James Robart.
The meeting was formed after Trudeau Cabinet ministers wanted to quickly get in touch with Trump’s cabinet secretaries to create areas of agreement, along with the Canadian administration’s desire to form a positive relationship with the new Republican administration.
Canadians have voiced their opinion on the matter: they want Trudeau to stand up to Trump and his fascist strategies, even if it results in a trade war with Canada’s largest trading partner. Since Trump’s inauguration, Trudeau has taken steps to prevent Canada’s economy from being pushed aside by Trump’s nationalist approach on trade and global security issues.
The Canadian government is hoping that they can avoid the damaging effects of Trump’s agenda, which include new taxes and strict trade deals.