MEXICO CITY, April 24 (Xinhua) -- Negotiators from Canada, the United States and Mexico could reach an "agreement in principle" on the modernization of NAFTA in the next 10 days, said a Mexican private sector representative on Tuesday.
Moises Kalach, coordinator of international negotiations for Mexico's Business Coordination Council (CCE) which advises the government on the talks, said that ongoing technical negotiations in Washington had made significant progress.
"In the next 10 days, we could really have a new treaty in principle," said Kalach in an interview with Radio Formula. "We are already very advanced, we have between nine and ten chapters ready for the approval of the ministers."
Technical teams from all three countries have been holding permanent talks in Washington since April 9, instead of the official rounds of negotiations, in order to reach a quicker solution.
Kalach said that the negotiators had been analyzing some of the more sensitive areas of the talks, such as rules of origin for the automotive sector, and that advances had been on chapters such as e-commerce and the environment.
"As long as we see political will from the American government to move toward a final treaty, I feel we can do it," said Kalach.
The three countries have been renegotiating NAFTA since August 2017, at the behest of Trump, who feels the free-trade pact has been bad for the American economy. The U.S. president has also regularly threatened to scrap NAFTA altogether.