Welles Orr Comments on Canadian Perspective on NAFTA Renegotiation in Law360

"With New WTO Case, Canada Muscles Up Against Trump"



Welles Orr commented on Canada's actions in advance of the sixth round of North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) renegotiation talks. The country opened new case before the World Trade Organization targeting key American anti-dumping and countervailing duty policies, which is viewed as a response to the Trump administration's aggressive position in the NAFTA talks. "I think the Canadians are sharpening their elbows," said Orr. "They've been hinting at getting tougher since the fifth round and I think this is in keeping with a lot of the public pressure that Canadian companies are putting on [the government] to make sure they look like they're holding their own." The sixth round of talks kicking off Jan. 23 in Montreal figures to be a crucial juncture for the overall NAFTA effort, he said, adding, "I think [Trump] is getting the picture that he needs to let this play out and let his negotiators come up with a deal. Any semblance of a threat again between now and March is really not helpful. That, combined with the Canadians getting stiffened up a bit and throwing the kitchen sink at us in the WTO suggests that the Montreal round has gotta have some markers checked off."