NAFTA talks will resume May 7

NAFTA talks will resume May 7
© Getty Images

After weeks of intense negotiations, trade officials agreed continue their talks on the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) next month.

Representatives from the United States, Mexico and Canada will meet again on May 7 in Washington. 

U.S. Trade Representative Robert LighthizerRobert (Bob) Emmet LighthizerPelosi sounds hopeful on new NAFTA deal despite tensions with White House On The Money: Economy adds 164K jobs in July | Trump signs two-year budget deal, but border showdown looms | US, EU strike deal on beef exports Chinese, US negotiators fine-tuning details of trade agreement: report MORE, Canada’s Chrystia Freeland and Mexico’s Ildefonso Guajardo have been meeting regularly in Washington over the past couple of weeks in a push to wrap up work on an updated NAFTA deal.


In the intervening week, Lighthizer is headed to China with several other Trump administration officials, including Treasury Secretary Steven MnuchinSteven Terner MnuchinNew book questions Harris's record on big banks On The Money: US paid record .1B in tariffs in September | Dems ramp up oversight of 'opportunity zones' | Judge hints at letting House lawsuit over Trump tax returns proceed Democrats ramp up oversight efforts over 'opportunity zone' incentive MORE, to discuss a slew of issues in the trading relationship.

The three nations’ trade teams — which have held a series of technical meetings between April 4-27 in Washington — are expected to keep working on the deal during next week's break for the leaders. 

"During more than three weeks, the teams deepened their technical work on all issues in the negotiations," the Mexican Embassy said in a release. 

While progress is being made, negotiators say there are still major hurdles to overcome. 

Besides the issues in the agreement, which ran from autos to financial services, Canada and Mexico are particularly concerned with proposed steel and aluminum tariffs President TrumpDonald John TrumpJim Jordan: Latest allegation of ignoring sexual misconduct is 'ridiculous' Trump's schedule shows open morning when impeachment hearings begin Overnight Defense: Families sue over safety hazards at Army base | Lawmakers, NBA's Enes Kanter speak out ahead of Erdoğan visit | Washington braces for public impeachment hearings MORE has promised to levy on all importers next week. 

The two trading partners have an exemption while talks continue. 

“There is no justification whatsoever for tariffs or quotas on Canadian steel or aluminum as a national security consideration," Freeland told reporters on Friday. 

"We continue to hold that position," she said.

A May 1 deadline to decide which nations will receive exemptions is expected to be extended, CNBC reported on Friday evening. 

But no details have emerged about what that means for U.S. allies, including the European Union, which had two leaders in Washington this week lobbying Trump against the tariffs.