Canada’s Trudeau to speak to Trump with spat over masks brewing

Tribune Content Agency

Canada’s Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said he will speak to Donald Trump in the coming days as the U.S. president escalates a battle with allies and 3M Co. over exports of medical equipment and N95 masks.

Trudeau said he wasn’t looking to retaliate or limit exports to the U.S. as countries race to secure supplies to fight the COVID-19 pandemic but will point out that Canada also sends key equipment across the border.

“We have nurses that work on the other side of the border, and in terms of gloves and other types of equipment and test kits, the fact is we’ve supplied that equipment to the United States,” Trudeau said at a news conference on Saturday. It would hurt both countries to interrupt those supplies, Trudeau said, adding he’s spoken with Trump over the course of the crisis.

Trump has invoked the Defense Production Act to ban exports of crucial medical supplies and has engaged in a public shouting match with 3M over its export commitments of N95 respirators and other supplies. 3M responded Friday that there would be “significant humanitarian implications of halting supplies of respirators to health-care workers in Canada and Latin America.”

Trudeau said Saturday that Canada will be receiving millions of masks from China within the next 48 hours.


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