Trudeau insisted that cultural exemptions remain a red line for the Canadian negotiating team and left the door open for tweaks to Canada's supply managed agriculture systems - a known irritant with U.S. President Donald Trump.
"We'll walk away and not sign a bad deal for Canadians", he vowed. "And we know we have a president who doesn't always follow the rules as they are laid out".
But Canadian officials, who note increasing political pressure on Trump from USA business and labor circles to keep NAFTA as a trilateral arrangement, said they were in no hurry.
"It won't be fine for Canada, but we love Canada", he is quoted in the report as saying.
"If we don't make a fair deal for the USA after decades of abuse, Canada will be out, " he wrote.
Canada enters Wednesday's talks with some strength on preserving Chapter 19 because American companies need its anti-dumping safeguards more than Canada's, according to Toronto trade lawyer Cyndee Todgham Cherniak.
On Wednesday, Mr. Trudeau said Canada must also keep protections for its cultural industries under NAFTA because "it wouldn't be good for our identity, it wouldn't be good for our sovereignty" if USA companies bought up Canadian TV and radio stations.
"That would not be good for Canada".
"We can't imagine a situation in which an American TV company or network could come up and buy radio stations or buy, you know, CTV for example", Trudeau said earlier in the day, referring to a major Canadian broadcasting network. "It wouldn't be good for our sovereignty".
It was the hill that former Progressive Conservative prime minister Brian Mulroney was willing to die on during the final hours of the original Canada-U.S. free trade deal in 1988.
"We're seeing goodwill on all sides and if we see some more flexibility, then I think we can start to see things moving in a good direction", added the source.
In the US, businesses, farmers, unions and Congress insistent that there must be a three-nation agreement.
Chicago Tribune: "Car prices projected to increase under Trump trade agreement with Mexico" - "New auto prices will rise, along with demand for used cars, as a result of President Donald Trump 's tentative trade agreement with Mexico".
Freeland added that a "win-win-win agreement is within reach".
Though the US president often threatens to withdraw from NAFTA, the latest pledges are piling up pressure on negotiators who are trying to wrap up more than a year of talks and strike a deal that could be signed before December 1.
"The president needs to take a look at the Constitution - it gives Congress authority over trade".
On Saturday, Trump said there is "no political necessity" to keep Canada in NAFTA and he warned Congress not to interfere or he would kill the pact.
"The president doesn't have a deal, he doesn't have a plan, and he doesn't even have the power to follow through on his empty threats".
Talks with Canada aimed at bringing the top United States trading partner into the tentative deal struck with Mexico broke off Friday without success, but the parties agreed to continue talks this week.
"Congress will support Canada throughout September", he said.
The bargaining teams are working to finalize the text of the agreement and deliver it to Congress by the end of the month.