Japan and 10 other countries were moving closer to a deal on pushing ahead with the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade pact without the USA, in a sign of how Pacific Rim economies are moving on with globalization despite resistance from Donald Trump.
Moving ahead with TPP would be a boost for the principle of multilateral trade agreements after U.S. President Donald Trump ditched it this year in favor of an "America First" policy that he reiterated at an Asia-Pacific summit in Vietnam. According to Canadian media, a spokesperson for Trudeau said that the 11 nations had "made progress" but "outstanding issues" remain.
Talks to revive the free trade deal appeared to have collapsed on Friday night when Trudeau failed to show up to a leaders' meeting, but Champagne blamed his absence on "a misunderstanding about the schedule".
The Mexican minister did not give details as to exactly what had been agreed, but answered "yes" when asked by reporters if ministers had reached agreement.
Reuters said it had seen a draft of the nations' final statement, which was due to be released later in the day.
It did not say when that might happen.
The political drama included a scheduled meeting of TPP leaders that the Canadian prime minister did not attend and that was ultimately cancelled, leading to worldwide media reports that Canada had "screwed" its TPP allies after getting cold feet.
A Canadian official said: "We've agreed to a framework towards the deal, with work programmes to deal with issues".
As well as the cuts to tariffs, the TPP agreement has provisions for protecting the environment, workers' rights and intellectual property - one of the major sticking points after the departure of the United States. She was also set to meet him at an Apec dinner late on Friday, and on Saturday in Vietnam.