Canada PM Trudeau arrives in Washington to meet with Trump
Feb.13, Washington: Prime Minister of Canada Justin Trudeau, a polar opposite to President Donald Trump in almost every way, arrived in Washington Monday morning keen to build a relationship that doesn't threaten trade.
In the first face-to-face meeting with the new U.S. president, Trudeau will talk about free trade at the White House. Both the leader will also participate in a roundtable discussion about women in the workplace.
The prime minister's plane landed at Dulles airport after heavy winds forced a change from Andrews Air Force base.
Trudeau, age 45, and Trump, age 70, have vastly different outlooks of the world.
Trudeau is a liberal who champions free trade and has welcomed 40,000 Syrian refugees. He calls himself a feminist and his Cabinet is 50 percent women. Trump has few women in his Cabinet. He has taken a protectionist stance on trade and wants to crack down on the inflow of migrants and refugees, the Associated Press reproted.
Trump's order to temporarily halt entry into the U.S. by people from seven predominantly Muslim nations, which is tied up in court, might come up during his bilateral meeting with Trudeau. But Trudeau is expected to focus on common economic interests.
Relations with the U.S. are crucial as more than 75 percent of Canada's exports go to the U.S., while 18 percent of U.S. exports go to Canada. There are fears among Canadians that they could be hurt as Trump targets Mexico in a re-negotiation of the North American Free Trade Agreement.
A White House official and a senior Canadian government official said the two countries plan to launch a new task force called the United States Canada Council for the Advancement of Women Business Leaders-Female Entrepreneurs. The officials agreed to confirm the move only if they were not quoted by name because they were not authorized to make the information public.
The Oslo Times International News Network