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Donald Trump signs US-Canada-Mexico trade deal with Justin Trudeau and Enrique Pena Nieto

US President Trump, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto have signed a new US-Mexico-Canada Agreement — or USMCA — in Buenos Aires.

The trio, who have often been at loggerheads on trade, used the G-20 Summit to resolve the trade dispute with America’s closest neighbours.

media_cameraPresident Donald Trump, centre, reaches out to Mexico’s President Enrique Pena Nieto, left, and Canada’s Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. Picture: AP

Mr Trump spent more than a year pushing the leaders of Canada and Mexico into agreeing to a rewrite of North American trade rules.

“This has been a battle, and battles sometimes make great friendships,” Mr Trump said at the start of the signing ceremony.

Saying that all three countries will benefit from the deal, Trump said of the USMCA, “It is probably the largest trade deal ever made.”

media_cameraPresident Donald Trump touches the shoulder of Canada’s Prime Minister Justin Trudeau as they prepare to sign a new United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement. Picture: AP

Mr Trump now faces what could prove a more formidable foe: the US Congress, which must ratify the agreement.

He says the parties have “taken a lot of barbs and a little abuse” during the renegotiation.

MEXICO GIVES KUSHNER HIGHEST HONOUR

Mexico’s government has presented Mr Trump’s son-in-law Jared Kushner with the highest honour America’s southern neighbour gives to foreigners.

Mexico’s Foreign Relations Department says that Mr Kushner earned the Order of the Aztec Eagle for his work on renegotiating the new trade agreement signed by Mexico, the US and Canada.

media_cameraSenior Advisor to the President of the United States Jared Kushner (L) receives the Mexican Order of the Aztec Eagle from Mexico’s President Enrique Pena Nieto in Buenos Aires. Picture: AFP

The award has caused an uproar in Mexico, where many are angry over Mr Trump’s insulting comments about Mexicans.

Prominent Mexican historian Enrique Krauze called the decision to give Mr Kushner the award an act of “supreme humiliation and cowardice.”

media_cameraSenior Advisor to the President of the United States Jared Kushner (L) receives the Mexican Order of the Aztec Eagle from Mexico’s President Enrique Pena Nieto. Picture: AFP

Mr Kushner says US-Mexico relations have improved because the countries decided to craft “win-win” solutions to migration, drug trafficking and other issues plaguing relations.

PUTIN TAKES VEILED SWIPE AT TRUMP

Russian President Vladimir Putin meanwhile denounced the “vicious” use of sanctions and trade protectionism, in a veiled swipe at Mr Trump at a G20 summit.

“One cannot help but see a dishonest competition increasingly taking the place of honest dialogue based on equality among states,” Mr Putin told leaders of emerging economies as the summit opened in Buenos Aires.

media_cameraRussian President Vladimir Putin attends the G20 summit in Buenos Aires, Argentina. Picture: AP

“A vicious practice of returning to illegal, unilateral sanctions and protectionist measures is spreading, going around the UN Charter, the rules of the WTO and internationally recognised legal norms,” Mr Putin said.

Mr Putin said that the result was “an extremely negative effect on the spirit of international cooperation,” discouraging business.

media_cameraUS President Donald Trump, left, and Russian President Vladimir Putin. Picture: AP

Mr Trump, who has advocated an “America First” policy on trade, has pledged to snub Mr Putin in Buenos Aires in protest at Russia’s naval skirmish with Ukraine in waters near Moscow-annexed Crimea.

Mr Trump’s decision comes as an investigation mounts at home into whether his presidential campaign colluded with Russia in the 2016 election and as Congress presses for tougher sanctions against Moscow.

SAUDI CROWN PRINCE MEETS WITH G20 LEADERS

Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman has talked with world leaders at a Group of 20 summit clouded by concerns about the gruesome killing of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

Journalists saw the crown prince speaking with French President Emmanuel Macron and others at the summit venue on Friday in Buenos Aires.

media_cameraRussia’s President Vladimir Putin and Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman line up for a family photo. Picture: AFP

Mr Macron’s office wouldn’t comment on what they discussed.

On the eve of the summit, the French president called fors international involvement in the investigations into Khashoggi’s killing in the Saudi Embassy in Istanbul last month.

EU leaders urged G20 participants to address concerns about journalist safety and the Saudi-backed war in Yemen.

media_camera(L to R) Russia’s President Vladimir Putin, US President Donald Trump, Rwanda’s President Paul Kagame, Brazil’s President Michel Temer and Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman line up for a family photo, during the G20 Leaders’ Summit in Buenos Aires. Picture: AFP

US intelligence agencies have concluded the crown prince ordered Khashoggi’s killing. Saudi Arabia has denied that.

Mr Trump has said he won’t be meeting with the Crown Prince at the G20.

Originally published as Trump signs US-Canada-Mexico trade deal

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