Speaking on the sidelines of the G7 gathering of rich nations in Quebec, Canada, US President Donald Trump expressed his affection for the summit hosting nation, but rushed to comment on the "unfair" trade relations that Canada pursues with the US, imposing whopping tariffs on their produce, such as dairy products.
"I love Canada but they treat us very unfairly on trade. Very, very unfairly. You see the numbers. Almost 300% on dairy," the media quoted him as saying.
Meanwhile, just ahead of the summit, which kicked off on Friday in the resort town of La Malbaie, Quebec, the Canadian dollar was reported to be in further retreat against its generally stronger US rival, The Globe and Mail reported. Earlier in the day, the Canadian dollar was trading 0.2 percent lower at $1.2994 to the greenback. The price of Canadian oil, one of the country’s major exports, experienced a similar dip in the wake of weakening demand in China and rising US output.
Separately, stocks and other risk-sensitive assets, including the commodity-backed Canadian currency, reduced in price ahead of the G7 meeting, which has been universally expected to produce a lively debate between US President Trump and other leaders over today’s rather complicated political climate.
As Ian Lee, a Canadian academic, stated in an interview with Sputnik, this year’s gathering is indeed remarkably different from previous ones, as it is very "fractious and so controversial," with its participants historically "lining up in opposition" to the United States.
Relations between the US and its historic allies have considerably soured following Trump’s announcement of 25 percent import tariffs on steel and 10 percent tariffs on aluminum for an array of countries. Canada, Mexico and European nations were temporarily relieved of the restrictions, but Trump subsequently chose not to extend the exemptions. Canada’s Trade Minister Francois Philippe Champagne called the staggering tariffs an attack "on the world economic order."
Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau turned down a US proposal on Wednesday to halt the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) and sign a bilateral trade pact.
The two-day G7 summit is currently taking place in Quebec’s century-old Fairmont Le Manoir Richelieu hotel.