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Three Amigos expected to stick to sunny script amid Brexit storm

Three Amigos expected to stick to sunny script amid Brexit storm

3Obama’s imminent departure amid rising protectionist sentiment could pose problems for Canada and Mexico.
North American leaders meeting in Ottawa this week are being confronted with the seismic economic ripples caused by Britain’s decision to leave the European Union.
Canada and Mexico must also take the opportunity to strengthen their bilateral co-operation as a counterweight to an incoming U.S. administration in 2017 that is likely to be anti-trade and more inward-looking about American interests, experts say.
Those thorny issues will lurk beneath the surface of what will be an attempt by the so-called Three Amigos summit to announce a new mechanism that keeps Canada, the U.S., and Mexico co-operating closely after President Barack Obama leaves office in seven months.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto will join Obama in the trilateral meeting, before Obama addresses Parliament later on Wednesday.
Their three-way bonhomie swims against a current of global disengagement in the U.S. presidential election. The presumptive Republican nominee Donald Trump has talked about new trade barriers and criticized international military co-operation, while his Democratic rival, Hillary Clinton, has opposed the new Trans-Pacific Partnership deal.
Now, the Brexit vote, which marks the start of an unprecedented negotiation to take Britain out of the EU, provides a stormy backdrop to the carefully crafted, sunny script of North American co-operation and solidarity to be delivered by Trudeau, Obama and Pena Nieto.
Trudeau’s environment minister, Catherine McKenna, told CTV’s Question Period on Sunday the contrast between Britain’s exit and growing North American co-operation will buttress the Three Amigos theme.
“It’s a great message to the world that we’re working together, we believe in trade, we have progressive governments,” said McKenna.

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