But the talks stalled over a series of significant policy differences, and they were affected by a Friday controversy over secret inflammatory remarks the Star revealed President Donald Trump had made about the negotiations on Thursday.
Earlier, as word of Trump's off-the-record remarks rippled through the media corps gathered outside the offices of the US trade representative, a stoic Freeland maintained her diplomatic countenance, saying only that both the Canadian negotiating team and USTR officials were working hard to reach an agreement.
"My negotiating counterparty is Ambassador [Robert] Lighthizer, and as I've said, he has brought good faith and goodwill to the table".
Canadian Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland is set to make an announcement on the state of the NAFTA talks at 4:30 p.m.at the Canadian embassy in Washington. "I love Canada, but they've taken advantage of our country for many years", Trump said during a speech in North Carolina.
Following a week of North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) negotiations that yielded few tangible results, U.S. Our officials are continuing to work towards the agreement.
The Star's report on Trump's off-the-record remarks appeared to complicate matters.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau responded to Trump's off the record comments at a press conference this morning.
Trump optimistic about Nafta talks with Canada
Under nearly any normal circumstance, the negotiation of a trade pact between countries should result in benefits for consumers, say experts who are closely watching the North American free trade talks unfold in Washington.
The greenback had rallied late on Thursday in a safe-haven move after Bloomberg News reported that Trump wanted to move ahead on a plan to impose tariffs on Chinese imports worth $US200 billion next week. His remarks raised doubts about whether the two countries could quickly reach a deal to keep Canada in the 24-year-old trading bloc, along with the United States and Mexico. "At least Canada knows where I stand", he later said on Twitter.
"One of the things I think we're accomplishing in this agreement is a better deal for Canadian and American auto workers", Freeland said Friday, praising the "rules of origin" agreement between the United States and Mexico to raise the amount of content in a vehicle that is produced in North America and ensure that 40 to 45 percent of the car's content is made by workers earning at least $16 an hour.
Speaking to Bloomberg of the record, he'd said a deal was possible "totally on our terms" and that he'd threatened Trudeau's government in the talks with tariffs on Canadian cars.
"Clearly that's not what the Mexicans and the Americans agreed to", said Leblond.
According to scholar and author He Qinglian, a widely respected expert on the Chinese economy who lives in the United States, the core issue for Washington is China's theft of USA intellectual property and using counterfeit goods to take US companies' market, and the "Made in China 2025" initiative. "I can't kill these people", he said of the Canadian government.
The Council on Foreign Relations estimated that a third of USA jobs in auto manufacturing have been lost since NAFTA came into effect in 1994.
The U.S. president has repeatedly criticized Canada's "unfair treatment" of American dairy farmers - even though the United States has a surplus in dairy trade with Canada.