NCTO welcomes Trump's decision to renegotiate NAFTA

Olive Rios
May 20, 2017

That combative posture was underscored just two hours later when the Commerce Department followed the news with the announcement of a new trade investigation against aircraft produced by NAFTA partner Canada, saying they receive unfair subsidies. "Unlike Mexico, it does not enjoy a trade surplus with the USA; while it sells more goods to the US than it buys, a sizable services trade deficit with its southern neighbour brings the overall balance to -$11.9 billion in 2015".

U.S. Sens. Deb Fischer (R-NE) and Jeff Flake (R-AZ) led a letter on Monday that highlighted the positive impacts of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) and the potential consequences of abandoning the trade deal.

National Corn Growers Association President Wesley Spurlock urged Lighthizer to remember the interests of US agriculture as they begin modernizing the agreement.

Freeland also stated before the Canadian Parliament that in the next months, the three member countries of NAFTA (Mexico, US and Canada) will take part in formal dialogues on the topic, taking into account the intention of US President Donald Trump to check it out.

Pacheco is executive director of the global business accelerator - a trade counseling company in the region. "Thanks to the President's leadership, today my office is formally notifying Congress of the administration's intent to renegotiate NAFTA". Talks will begin no earlier than August 16, 2017, he said in a statement.

Commenting on the news, Oregon Democrat Senator Jeff Merkley said, "The key question for trade deals is whether they create good-paying jobs for working Americans, or destroy good-paying jobs".

"The world has changed, we've learned a lot and we can make it better", he said.

In the letter Lighthizer points out that NAFTA was negotiated 25 years ago and many of its provisions don't "reflect modern standards".

Last week, Mexico called on the United States to uphold NAFTA, arguing that the suspension of the trade deal would have consequences for both countries. He promised a very aggressive negotiating schedule to conclude the talks as quickly as possible.

On Thursday, Mexican Foreign Secretary Luis Videgaray met with Secretary of State Rex Tillerson to discuss US-Mexico relations. Insisting on ideas like that would make agreement hard to reach.

"The agreement is trilateral and should continue to be a trilateral platform. Why?" American suppliers would have a much harder time getting contracts with Mexico and Canada. Negotiations are projected to be completed by the end of the year. NAFTA had widened access to Mexican and Canadian markets, boosting US farm exports and benefiting many farmers.

"NAFTA's track record is one of economic growth and middle-class job creation", Canada's minister of foreign affairs, Chrystia Freeland, said in a statement.

In February, the Congressional Research Service released a report on NAFTA, which found the trade agreement "did not cause the huge job losses feared by the critics or the large economic gains predicted by supporters. Our integrated economies and supply chains support millions of jobs across the continent". "We need Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to stand up for people and the planet".

In an effort to fulfill another campaign promise, the Trump administration moved to renegotiate a major trade agreement that candidate Donald Trump blamed for "massive" US job losses since it was instituted more than two decades ago.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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