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Canadian Economy Could Suffer If NAFTA Negotiations Drag on, Ambassador Says

March 6, 2017, 10:38 PM UTC

Stephen Schwarzman, the head of a business advisory council to President Donald Trump, once said Canada has a “very special status” with the U.S. But this may not be enough to shield the country from potential financial fallout if the two countries don’t agree on an updated version of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA).

Efforts to renegotiate NAFTA between the U.S. and Canada have stalled in the 45 days, Bloomberg reports, leaving investors on both sides of the border in a similar state of limbo. While Trump’s NAFTA negotiations also target Mexico, the president said earlier this month that Canada is in a “much less severe situation than what’s taken place on the southern border.”

“People are sitting on their wallets and they’re not investing as much as they would if there was more certainty,” Canadian diplomat David MacNaughton told Bloomberg on Monday. “The reality is that uncertainty will hurt Canada and the United States, so we need to work together to remove that.”

McNaughton’s comments come after Schwarzman assured Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and his cabinet back in January that America’s Northern neighbor is unlikely to be heavily impacted by changes in NAFTA, according to Reuters.