Often at odds, Trump, Trudeau tout economic bonds

'Prime Minister, I pledge to work with you in pursuit of our many shared interests,' Trump says at joint press conference

Often at odds, Trump, Trudeau tout economic bonds

World Bulletin / News Desk

Glossing over their vast differences in policy, President Donald Trump and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau prioritized on Monday the robust economic relationship shared by the North American neighbors.

Speaking at a joint press conference in the East Room of the White House, Trump said the allies will be "tweaking" their trade relationship, but pledged to ensure that any adjustments would benefit the countries mutually.

"Prime Minister, I pledge to work with you in pursuit of our many shared interests," Trump said. "This includes a stronger trading relationship between the United States and Canada. It includes safe, efficient and responsible cross-border travel and migration. And it includes close partnership on domestic and international security."

Canada is the U.S.'s second largest trade partner, and the single biggest export market. The close allies exchanged more than $575 billion in goods in 2015, according to the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative.

Trump has often taken aim at NAFTA, the tripartite free trade accord brokered between Washington, Ottawa and Mexico City, pledging to renegotiate the decades-old pact while saving his most strident criticisms for the U.S.'s southern neighbor.

"It's a much less severe situation than what's taken place on the southern border," Trump said of the trade relationship with Canada.

Trudeau spoke of the fundamental bonds between his country and the U.S., saying that millions of jobs rely on "this crucial partnership".

"Maintaining strong, economic ties is vital to our mutual success and we're going to continue to work closely together over the coming years so that Canadian and American families can get ahead," he said.

"Much of our economy depends on good working relationships with the United States, good integration with the American economy," he added.

Asked about Trump's controversial policy to bar residents of seven Muslim-majority countries from the U.S., Trudeau, who has strongly defended refugees, deflected, saying only that over the course of the U.S.-Canada relationship "there have been times where we have differed in our approaches."

Trump is reportedly weighing a new measure similar to the order he signed into law last month after a federal court last Thursday voted to maintain a stay on the executive action, citing a lack of evidence to support the administration's position that any individual from the listed countries perpetrated an attack in the U.S.

Undeterred, Trump called the policy "common sense".

"We are going to pursue it vigorously and we don't want to have our country have the kinds of problems that you're witnessing taking place not only here but all over the world," he said.

Güncelleme Tarihi: 14 Şubat 2017, 01:40