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Canadian and Mexican FMs confident of new NAFTA deal

NAFTA

Mexico City, Feb 3 (UITV/IANS)- The foreign ministers of Canada and Mexico have said the current renegotiation of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) will end up with a "win-win-win" situation for North America.

Chrystia Freeland, Canada's foreign minister, admitted on Friday the talks with the US and Mexico were complicated but the three countries would take the time needed to do it correctly, Xinhua news agency reported.

She said here in a press conference that concluding the deal as rapidly as possible would be for the best but that "uncertainty is never good."

Freeland met her Mexican counterpart, Luis Videgaray, and the U.S. Secretary of State, Rex Tillerson, who is on a brief tour of Latin America.

The three ministers discussed various topics, including NAFTA. The sixth round of the renegotiation talks ended on Monday in Montreal, Canada, as the US asked for the process to be accelerated.

According to Freeland, the meeting on Friday was "very productive" and reiterated Canada's position on the agreement being modernized to give more opportunities for the middle-class and those working to enter it.

In the same press conference, Vidagaray agreed with Freeland that the negotiations "are advancing in a serious and professional manner."

"From the perspective of the Mexican government, we have a great opportunity for this to be a win-win-win negotiation, where Mexico wins, Canada wins and the US wins," added the minister.

"We do not see trade negotiations as a zero-sum game, where somebody loses and somebody wins," he explained.

The seventh round of talks will take place in Mexico City from February 26 to March 6, with the Mexican authorities confident of closing chapters on sanitary and phytosanitary measures, telecommunications and technical barriers to trade.

The three countries have been revising NAFTA since August at the request of US President Donald Trump, who believes the trade deal has hurt American business interests.