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Trump open to bilateral trade pacts if NAFTA talks fail

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Trump open to bilateral trade pacts if NAFTA talks fail

U.S. President Donald Trump said Oct. 11 that he was open to bilateral trade pacts with either Canada or Mexico if a three-way deal cannot be reached to revise the 1994 North American Free Trade Agreement, Reuters reported.

"It's possible we won't be able to reach a deal with one or the other, but in the meantime we'll make a deal with one," Trump said during a White House meeting with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, who was in Washington to promote NAFTA's benefits amid the start of a new round of talks near Washington.

Trump added that a "very creative" deal was still possible to benefit all three countries.

Meanwhile, business leaders at a U.S.-Mexico CEO conference, which ran in parallel with the talks in the U.S., said no NAFTA deal would be better than a bad deal.

Guillermo Vogel, who co-chaired the Mexico City event, said the failure of NAFTA would be a "lose-lose" situation. He said U.S.-Mexico trade without it could lead to a U.S. trade deficit larger than the current $64 billion.

Trump has threatened to withdraw if he does not win concessions to reduce the U.S. trade deficit with Mexico.