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President Donald Trump on Thursday admitted that Mexico would not directly pay for the construction of his proposed wall along the southern border. Instead, he claims the wall will be paid for by revenue gained from a new trade deal pending in Congress.

“During the campaign, I said Mexico would pay for it,” Trump told reporters outside the White House. “They are paying for it with the incredible deal we made, the USMCA.”

That deal, short for the U.S. Mexico Canada Agreement, was approved by those three nations following lengthy negotiations over a replacement for the North American Free Trade Agreement, which Trump has long slammed as the “single worst deal ever approved.”

The Trump administration has provided few details about how the USMCA would lead Mexico to pay for the wall, or if the increased revenue from the Nafta replacement would actually reimburse the U.S. taxpayers who would directly fund the wall’s construction.

The president, whose central campaign promise was that Mexico would pay for a wall stretching across the roughly 2,000-mile border, added: “When I said Mexico would pay for the wall in front of thousands and thousands of people … obviously I never meant Mexico would write a check.”

But on the campaign trail, Trump appeared to make that argument. A March 2016 memo to Washington Post reporters explained multiple ways to “compel Mexico” to “make a one-time payment of $5-10 billion” to keep the U.S. from cutting off the spigot of money it already sends to Mexico annually.

Sporting a white “Make America Great Again” cap, Trump made the remarks Thursday morning before boarding Air Force One to visit a Texas town near the border — his latest move amid fraying negotiations with Democrats over an ongoing partial government shutdown.

A day earlier, Trump walked out of a meeting with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer after the Democrats said they would not approve funding for a border wall even if other parts of the government were opened up.

“I asked what is going to happen in 30 days if I quickly open things up, are you going to approve Border Security which includes a Wall or Steel Barrier? Nancy said, NO,” Trump explained in a tweet as Pelosi and Schumer described the walk-out to reporters.

“I said bye-bye, nothing else works!” Trump added.

Schumer described Trump’s behavior as a “temper tantrum,” which Trump denied in a tweet Thursday morning.

Trump is committed to his demand that any spending deal to fund nine federal agencies must include $5.7 billion to go toward a border wall. A letter from Trump’s administration to Congress estimated, however, that that amount would only construct about 243 miles of a border barrier.

Democratic leaders, on the other hand, are refusing to provide any money toward a wall, and have suggested reopening as much of the government as possible while the deadlocked border security negotiations continue.



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EU will offer Brexit delay, but length depends on UK parliament

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The European Union will grant Britain an extension to its Brexit negotiating period, but the length of the delay will depend on whether Prime Minister Theresa May is able to win a vote in parliament on an exit agreement next week, draft summit conclusions said.

The updated conclusions for an EU leaders’ summit, which have yet to be finalised, said the bloc would grant an extension to May 22 if May is able to get the existing Brexit divorce deal approved by the British parliament.

If she is unable to do so, Britain would only be give a Brexit delay until April 12. At this point the country would face a disorderly Brexit, or could ask for another extension if it agreed to hold European Parliament elections on its soil on May 23-26.

“The European Council agrees to an extension until 22 May 2019, provided the Withdrawal Agreement is approved by the House of Commons next week,” said the updated draft of the EU leaders’ agreement on Brexit, which was seen by Reuters.

“If the Withdrawal Agreement is not approved by the House of Commons next week, the European Council agrees to an extension until 12 April 2019 and expects the United Kingdom to indicate a way forward at the latest by this date.”

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Apple rallies as investors anticipate streaming service announcement

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Apple’s stock is on a tear this week as it releases a string of products in the lead-up to its highly anticipated event on Monday.

The stock had its biggest rally Thursday since January, closing up 3.7 percent at $195.09 per share for its ninth positive day in the past 10 trading days.

Apple fell just short of taking back the title of the world’s largest public company from Microsoft. Still, Apple is once again approaching $1 trillion in market value, adding about $33 billion to its market capitalization Thursday, bringing it to $919.9 billion.

While Apple has put the spotlight on its hardware this week, announcing new iPads, iMacs and AirPods three days in a row (with a fourth product possibly coming Friday), the focus of Monday’s event is expected to be on a new streaming video service. Teasing the event with the slogan, “It’s show time,” Apple is expected to introduce a new streaming TV service that will give iPhone and iPad users access to free original content and subscription channels such as Starz and CBS All Access, CNBC previously reported.

Investors are already seeing a big upside to Apple’s expected venture into streaming. Needham upgraded the stock on Thursday and raised its price target from $180 to $225.

In a note to investors, Needham analysts wrote that if users adopt Apple’s streaming service, it “should lower churn and drive higher lifetime value.” It could even attract new customers to its products and services, they wrote.

Citigroup also raised its price target on the stock from $170 to $220 on Thursday, even though analysts said in a note they don’t anticipate the launch of Apple’s streaming service “to be a big catalyst for the stock.” They noted, rather, that the streaming is meant to drive recurring revenue for the company, in continuation of its services strategy.

Wedbush raised its price target from $200 to $215 Thursday, saying, “Monday’s announcement is just the tip of the iceberg for [Apple CEO Tim] Cook’s broader streaming content strategy to take hold and in our opinion adds a significant potential catalyst to the Apple services growth story for years to come.” The analysts hedged slightly, noting that Apple “is definitely playing from behind the eight ball in this content arms race with Netflix, Disney, Hulu, and AT&T/Time Warner all going after this next consumer frontier.”

Disclosure: Comcast, which owns CNBC parent NBCUniversal, is a co-owner of Hulu.

— CNBC’s
Michael Sheetz
contributed to this report.

Subscribe to CNBC on YouTube.

Watch: Apple announces new AirPods with wireless charging and voice control

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US allies defy Washington’s please to ban Huawei

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But its not just Germany that is defying the U.S. Italy’s government has said that it won’t ban Huawei from its telecommunications industry, saying there is no proof of any security threat.

And in the United Kingdom, intelligence officials said that any risks posed by Huawei can be mitigated, according to an FT report in February. Even individual carriers have expressed their concern over excluding Huawei from the 5G rollout. U.K.-headquartered carrier Vodafone said banning Huawei could cost it millions of pounds and slow the rollout of 5G.

Experts say that while the American rollout of 5G would not be affected by a Huawei ban, Europe could suffer. Nikhil Batra, senior telecommunications research manager at IDC said European carriers’ businesses have struggled compared to those in the U.S., so they want the cheapest possible deal for 5G equipment — something that Huawei can provide.

“When you look at the industry as small as network equipment providers, excluding Huawei will have a big impact on the industry. If I am going from three major vendors to two major vendors, competition decreases, prices will increase as a result. A lot of countries, including specific telcos, are looking at Huawei as a better-cost option,” Batra told CNBC on Thursday.

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