The North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) talks appear to be making headway again, although Canada seems to be somewhat on the sidelines, according to report from Politico.  Today, top officials from Mexico and the United States are again meeting, following discussions last week.

The two sides are moving into the final stages of an agreement on complicated automotive rules, marking a significant step forward on one of the most controversial issues being discussed.  Washington hopes that the talks with Mexico will pressure Ottawa into making some concessions.

“The U.S. is pretty frustrated with Canada, rightly or wrongly.  They see them as foot-dragging,” said Dan Ujczo, an international trade lawyer who specializes in Canada-U.S. matters.  “We’re not going to waste time with Canada.  We’ve got to strike now with Mexico to get this ratified.”

Election pressure may be part of the reason why talks are making headway again. The Mexican presidential campaign is now over, but the U.S. midterm elections are coming up, which has sparked a White House push to make progress on NAFTA negotiations.