NewsAlert: US triggers 90-day NAFTA process

Pauline Gross
May 19, 2017

The U.S. won't be able to officially begin trade talks with Canada and Mexico until the end of a 90-day consultation period, however, Politico reported. The National Potato Council (NPC) applauded the Trump Administration's announcement to renegotiate the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA).

Still, Lighthizer said reforming the trade agreement fulfilled one of Trump's "key promises to the American people".

Late last month, Trump said that he had planned to withdraw from NAFTA, rather than try to renegotiate it. "We're going to give renegotiation a good strong shot".

"We are committed to concluding these negotiations with timely and substantive results for USA consumers, businesses, farmers, ranchers, and workers, consistent with USA priorities and the negotiating objectives established by the Congress in statute", Lighthizer said in the letter.

Ross says the USA manufacturing industry has been decimated by NAFTA, a deal the White House considers deeply unfair.

The AAPC is a Washington, D.C., association that says it "represents the common public policy interests" of FCA US, Ford Motor Company and General Motors Company.

As an example, Merkley said, the Trump Administrations health care plan destroys care for millions of workers while delivering $600 billion to the wealthiest Americans. His repeated complaints that bad trade deals cost American jobs gained him support among working class voters, who helped lift him to the White House.

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The renegotiation provides the Trump Administration with a unique opportunity to reset the US trade agenda, according to National Farmers Union (NFU).

The letter did not, however, offer details about what the scope of these negotiations would include. "NAFTA by trade agreement standards is an ancient trade agreement", Schwab said. The administration has made reducing the trade deficit a priority, and Lighthizer suggested Thursday the US will seek to lure back firms that have moved production to Mexico.

"We should build on what has worked in NAFTA, but change and improve what has not", he said.

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., called the letter "a stark contrast" with the promises Trump made during the campaign.

The trade deal was negotiated by President George H.W. Bush, but was submitted to Congress by President Bill Clinton, who cajoled enough Democrats to join with Republicans to back it. The letter to Congress is not almost as detailed as an earlier draft that was prepared before Lighthizer was confirmed.

In the letter to Congress, Ambassador Lighthizer expresses the Trump Administration's commitment to concluding the negotiations with timely and substantive results for USA consumers, businesses, farmers, ranchers, and workers.

The USTR is required by Congress to publish more detailed objectives at least 30 days before formal negotiations begin.

Other reports by GizPress

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