President Trump on Monday took a victory lap after his administration secured a last-minute deal with Canada to salvage the three-nation North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA).
Surrounded by top administration officials in the White House Rose Garden, Trump called the reworked agreement “the most important trade deal we’ve ever made by far.”
The president said it fulfills his campaign pledge to replace NAFTA, which he called “perhaps the world trade deal ever made.”
“Today, we have kept that promise” he said. “Truly historic news for our nation and indeed the world.”
Trump claimed the deal validates his hard-line stance on trade and suggested it could improve the United States’ leverage in negotiations with China and the European Union.
“Without tariffs, we wouldn’t be talking about a deal, just for those babies out there that keep talking about tariffs,” he said.
The announcement represents a significant victory for Trump, who constantly railed against the quarter-century-old trading pact with Mexico and Canada. Stocks rose Monday on news of the agreement.