President Trump, Ecuador’s Moreno talk trade deal

President Donald Trump shakes hands with Ecuadorian President Lenin Moreno during a meeting in the Oval Office of the White House, Wednesday, Feb. 12, 2020, in Washington. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

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UPDATED 9:43 AM PT — Thursday, February 13, 2020

President Trump recently hosted his Ecuadorian counterpart Lenin Moreno at the White House in an effort to advance mutual economic and political ties.

During their meeting Wednesday, the two leaders discussed a possible free trade deal, military contracts as well as their mutual commitment to freedom and democracy in Latin America.

President Trump noted the U.S.-Ecuador trade deal could be based off the USMCA accord with Mexico and Canada, which he called “a great model.”

“USMCA has been very successful already,” said the president. ” The fruits are really taking place. ”

Moreno highlighted the challenges his country is still trying to overcome after years of socialist rule. He said his predecessor, Rafael Correa, made numerous mistakes in foreign affairs and economic policies, including his support for the far-left regime of Nicolas Maduro in Venezuela.

Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro stands inside the Supreme Court in Caracas, Venezuela, Friday, Jan. 31, 2020. Maduro is at the court to give his annual presidential address. (AP Photo/Ariana Cubillos)

Moreno pointed out that closer ties with the U.S. could help Ecuador restore its economy and international ties.

“We need to remember that the USA is the main trade partner for Ecuador and this is not only in terms of trade, but because we share many common values such as the love for liberty, democracy, justice, solidarity, fraternity and the respect of human rights,” stated the Ecuadorian leader.

President Trump said the U.S. could increase the imports of agricultural goods from Ecuador, while selling military equipment and manufactured goods to the country.

Moreno also expressed hope the U.S. could help Ecuador battle drug trafficking, corruption and organized crime. Ecuador has accepted around 400,000 Venezuelan refugees fleeing the Maduro regime in recent years and Moreno said that policy will continue.

These joint U.S.-Ecuadorian efforts could arguably improve stability, respect for human rights and boost U.S. influence in Latin America.

“Ecuador had a very unusual outlook on life, but with your great president, he realizes how important it is to get along with the United States,” said President Trump.

Critics have pointed out Moreno may be seeking U.S. support due to violent protests against his administration that are allegedly inspired by the Maduro regime. In the meantime, Ecuador remains a major recipient of U.S. foreign aid, but it’s unclear if the sides can reestablish a fair and reciprocal partnership going forward.

RELATED: Interim Venezuelan President Guaido Attacked By Maduro Supporters

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Britain seeks post-Brexit trade deal with Australia

Britain’s Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab, left, and Australian Foreign Minister Marise Payne pose for photographs ahead of a bilateral meeting at Parliament House in Canberra, Thursday, Feb. 6, 2020. (Lukas Coch/Pool Photo via AP)

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UPDATED 12:35 PM PT — Thursday, February 6, 2020

The U.K. is hoping to strike its first post-Brexit free trade agreement with Australia. British Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab and Australian Foreign Minister Marise Payne made the announcement on Thursday.

“We are ready and enthusiastic to seize the opportunity of a new era for enhanced strategic and economic cooperation, based in our deeply felt common values and principles,” stated Payne.

The countries already have a trade relationship worth over $22 billion, but Raab said he believes Britain has the potential to do more. Payne shared this optimistic sentiment and said she is confident in the new negotiations.

“I’m very pleased,” she said. “Foreign Secretary Raab has chosen to come to Australia, as his first visit after Britain left the EU, and I am confident that Australia can negotiate a very positive FTA with the U.K.”

Payne added the two countries hope to have the deal completed by the end of 2020. The U.K. will also be pursuing trade deals with other major economies, including the U.S. and Japan.

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Sen. Ernst: USMCA, China trade deals benefit farmers in long run

Sen. Joni Ernst, R-Iowa, talks to the media prior to the impeachment trial of President Donald Trump at the Capitol, Thursday, Jan. 30, 2020, in Washington. (AP Photo/Steve Helber)

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UPDATED 3:10 PM PT — Sunday, February 2, 2020

Iowa Sen. Joni Ernst is saying the president’s work on trade will benefit U.S. farmers in the long run. On Sunday, Ernst touted the USMCA and Phase One China deals, which were recently passed by Congress. She said farmers stand to gain the most from both agreements.

According to Ernst, the administration took the right approach by raising tariffs on China, which forced them to the negotiating table. She also said the White House acted responsibly by offering bailouts to farmers, which offset retaliatory tariffs from Beijing.

The senator said any negative effects from the trade war on farmers are only temporary.

“If you ask Iowa farmers, ‘Is the president doing the right thing?’ they will say, ‘Yes.’ One farmer said, ‘You know what, I’m tightening my belt. Things are tougher right now, but I know in the long run this is going to be better for my grandchildren. They won’t have to struggle with China cheating us the way we have experienced in the past.’” – Jodi Ernst, U.S. Senator (R-IA)

Ernst attended the signing of the Phase One trade deal with China last month, where she praised President Trump for “delivering real results for Iowa’s farmers and manufacturers.”

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Pompeo: U.K. heads list of trade deal priority with U.S.

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, reacts as he attends a public discussion event with Britain’s Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab, at the Institute of Mechanical Engineers, in London, Thursday, Jan. 30, 2020. Pompeo is in London on the cusp of Britain’s departure from the European Union for talks focused on a post-Brexit free trade deal. (Kevin Lamarque/Pool Photo via AP)

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UPDATED 10:33 AM PT — Thursday, January 30, 2020

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is predicting a strong relationship between the U.S. and a post-Brexit U.K. in the years to come. In a news conference with Britain’s foreign secretary Monday, he said he had faith in the U.K. population to hold their leaders accountable and get Brexit right.

Secretary Pompeo went on to say the democratic process will deliver security, prosperity and opportunity for the British people. On the topic of a post-Brexit trade deal, he said the U.K. is headed to the top of the list, even going as far as to say he believes a deal can be completed before presidential elections this year.

“The previous administration took a view that if the United Kingdom made this decision, they’d be at the back of the line — we intend to put the United Kingdom at the front of the line,” stated Pompeo. “This is a historic relationship between our two countries, save for that moment we busted away a couple hundred years ago, it’s been fantastic.”

British Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab said both he and Pompeo have confidence in their relationship to have candid discussions over their concerns about trade.

U.S. officials have cited their concerns over the U.K.’s plan to use Chinese Huawei technology in their future high-speed network, but have said it wouldn’t “greatly affect” trade deal negotiations.

RELATED: President Trump advances EU, U.K. trade deals at Davos forum

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President Trump officially signs the USMCA trade deal, making good on his promise to replace NAFTA

President Donald Trump signs a new North American trade agreement with Canada and Mexico, during an event at the White House, Wednesday, Jan. 29, 2020, in Washington. (AP Photo/ Evan Vucci)

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UPDATED 11:29 AM PT — Wednesday, January 29, 2020

President Trump said the USMCA is a truly fair and reciprocal trade deal, which will keep jobs and wealth in America. He made those remarks before signing the new trade agreement into law at the White House Wednesday.

The president said his administration is finally ending what he called the “NAFTA nightmare.” He then thanked several lawmakers and cabinet members for their work on the agreement, and said the USMCA is estimated to add another 1.2 percent to GDP as well as countless American jobs.

President Trump then pointed out politicians have promised for years to replace NAFATA, but unlike them he keeps his promises.

“Two decades of politicians ran for office vowing to replace the NAFTA and this was a catastrophe…yet once elected, they never even tried, they never even gave it a shot,” he stated. “They sold out, but I’m not like those other politicians, I guess, in many ways — I keep my promises and I’m fighting for the American workers.”

President Trump also said the agreement is a partnership with all three countries, and thanked Mexico and Canada for their work on the deal.

RELATED: President Trump advances EU, U.K. trade deals at Davos forum

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President Trump advances EU, U.K. trade deals at Davos forum

OAN Newsroom
UPDATED 9:50 AM PT — Thursday, January 23, 2020

President Trump praised America’s economic success during a press briefing before leaving the World Economic Forum. The president also advanced his proposals to reform the international trading system to make the global economy a more fair and sustainable environment.

One America’s Kristian Rouz has more.

RELATED: President Trump delivers remarks at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland

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Kudlow: U.S. exports to China will double under ‘phase one’ deal, agreement to be signed in early January

White House chief economic adviser Larry Kudlow talks with reporters outside the White House, Friday, Dec. 6, 2019, in Washington. (AP Photo/ Evan Vucci)

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UPDATED 1:52 PM PT — Monday, December 16, 2019

According to National Economic Council Director Larry Kudlow, the ‘phase one’ trade deal with China is complete. While speaking to reporters at the White House Monday, he said U.S. exports to China will double under the deal. The White House economic adviser also said China will increase imports of all goods and services, and emphasized the positive effects this will have on economic growth in the U.S.

“It covers IP and it covers tech transfers, and it covers financial services and it covers currencies and so forth,” he explained. “But one of the things it covers…not just agriculture, but the deal includes a Chinese purchase of America goods and services across the board.”

Kudlow pointed out that currency manipulation is a key part of the agreement, and it addresses other major issues like IP theft and foreign access to the Chinese market. Trade Rep. Robert Lighthizer will sign the deal with the Chinese vice premier in Washington in early January.

U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer speaks during an event to sign an update to the North American Free Trade Agreement, at the national palace in Mexico City, Tuesday, Dec. 10. 2019. (AP Photo/Marco Ugarte)

During that same press briefing, Kudlow also commented on the USMCA. He said a separate agreement on labor inspections with Mexico will not derail the trade deal and will boost the sides’ compliance with the accord. On Monday, Mexico said it opposed U.S. inspectors monitoring labor conditions at Mexican plants, but the U.S. economic chief stressed that all USMCA members must have the same labor standards.

“We want all the countries that we trade with to have the same worker rights as we do here, to the extent that we will work through with Mexico and Canada on workers rights and union rules,” he stated. “I don’t think that’s going to be difficult, and I know it’s not going to stop the successful passage of USMCA.”

Kudlow went on to say the White House will work on a trade deal with the Britain soon soon as possible, noting impeachment will not slow anything down.

RELATED: Mnuchin Says Trade Deal With China To Boost Global Economy

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US, China reach phase one trade deal, source says

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Is Trump leveraging his own impeachment to get a trade deal over the finish line?

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The United States and China have agreed to the terms of a phase one trade deal with China, though the details are still being finalized, a source told FOX Business.

Earlier Thursday, President Trump tweeted about the ongoing trade war with China, saying “Getting VERY close to a BIG DEAL with China. They want it, and so do we!”

It came as Trump and U.S. trade negotiators met at the White House on Thursday, as another U.S. tariff hike on $160 billion of Chinese imports is due to take effect Sunday.

The two sides have increased tariffs on billions of dollars of each other's imports in a fight over Beijing's technology ambitions and trade surplus.

The conflict has disrupted global trade and threatened to chill economic growth.

The planned weekend U.S. tariff hike would extend punitive duties to almost everything the U.S. would buy from China. Imports last year totaled more than $500 billion.

TRUMP, US TRADE NEGOTIATORS TALK STRATEGY AS CHINA TARIFFS LOOM

China has retaliated by raising duties on $160 billion of American goods but has been running out of imports for retaliation due to the lopsided trade balance. Beijing also has tried to limit losses to its own economy by avoiding imposing tariffs on high-tech components and other goods required by Chinese manufacturers.

In a conciliatory gesture, China's Ministry of Commerce announced Friday it was waiving punitive duties on U.S. soybeans and pork.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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