Canada Postpones North American Summit Until Later This Year

Canada has postponed the North American leaders summit with the U.S. and Mexico until later this year, the White House said.

Canada was set to be the host of the summit, last held in February 2014 in Toluca, Mexico. White House press secretary Josh Earnest said Thursday in Washington he wasn’t aware of the reason for the postponement “from early this year to later this year.”

Mexican Foreign Minister Jose Antonio Meade said that the nations had discussed meeting in February and postponed the summit at the suggestion of Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s government, which faces elections in October.

“This isn’t a cancellation,” Meade told reporters Thursday in Santa Ana, California, according to his press office. “It needs to be understood as a postponement in light of Canada’s electoral calendar, which was recently announced.”

Jason MacDonald, Harper’s communications director, said no date for the meeting has been set.

“We intend to host the North American Leaders’ Summit later this year,” he said, without elaborating.

Earnest said there wasn’t any indication that the reason for the postponement was the delay in the decision by President Barack Obama’s administration on TransCanada Corp.’s Keystone XL pipeline.

The U.S.-Canada relationship is “far deeper than this one construction project,” Earnest said at a White House briefing.

The host for the summit rotates among the U.S., Canada and Mexico and there has been no fixed date for it to take place.

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