Despite the eagerness of some trading partners, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says Canada is in no hurry to sign a revised Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) this week at the APEC summit in Vietnam.
"Let me remind everyone Canada will not be rushed into a deal that is not in the best interest of Canada and Canadians.
I have always been very clear that I will stand up for Canadian jobs, for Canadian values, that's exactly what we will do here," he told reporters at a joint news conference with Vietnamese prime minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc after an official state visit.
While some observers thought TPP was left for dead after U.S. President Donald Trump pulled his country out of the agreement in January, the other 11 original signatories, including heavyweights like Canada, Japan, Australia and New Zealand, have pressed ahead with talks to secure a pact that would eliminate tariffs on industrial and farm products across a bloc whose trade totalled $356.3 billion last year.
Trade ministers, including Canada's François-Philippe Champagne, are meeting in Da Nang, the site of the APEC meeting, to hammer out a revised deal before national leaders descend on the resort town later this week.
Canada is pushing for the addition of more "progressive" elements to the trade deal, much like what the country's negotiators have called for in the ongoing NAFTA talks – in particular, Canada has sought the inclusion of chapters on the environment, labour rights and gender equality, sources told CBC News.