Mexico industry eyes NAFTA changes to find common ground with Trump

Mexico industry eyes NAFTA changes to find common ground with Trump

Mexico industry eyes NAFTA changes to find common ground with Trump

In a statement, the Mexican economy ministry said it expected talks between the United States, Mexico and Canada on renegotiating the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) to be able to get under way from August 16.

The demands that the Trump administration makes in the NAFTA talks could have far-reaching implications for US trade relations across the globe, with China keen to make inroads with Mexico and Canada if the United States is seen to be retreating.

In a letter to lawmakers setting out negotiating objectives, USTR Robert Lighthizer said that the pact should, "through an appropriate mechanism, ensure that the NAFTA countries avoid manipulating exchange rates in order to prevent effective balance of payments adjustment or to gain an unfair competitive advantage".

The Trump administration notified Congress in May of plans to renegotiate the regional trade deal. -South Korea free trade deal.

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Neither Canada or Mexico is now on a U.S. Treasury a "watch list" for possible currency manipulation.

There was no mention of active disputes between the United States and Canada over softwood lumber and dairy products, but the document targeted a range of agricultural non-tariff barriers, including subsidies and unfair pricing structures, that are now at the heart of those standoffs.

A spokesman for Ford Motor Co said: "Foreign currency manipulation is the 21st century trade barrier, and we strongly support the inclusion of this top-tier issue in the USA negotiating objectives for NAFTA".

USTR said it would seek to strengthen NAFTA's rules of origin to ensure that the pact's benefits do not go to outside countries and to "incentivize" the sourcing of USA goods.

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At least 557 groups, including the United Auto Workers and other top labor unions, filed public comments with the U.S. Trade Office ahead of a June deadline, where they eviscerated the trade deal as bad for America and its workers.

Earlier on Monday, AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka said NAFTA had been an "unequivocal failure" and should be completely renegotiated.

"I'm looking forward to working closely with the administration to achieve the best deal possible for American agriculture", Conaway stated.

Since the NAFTA trade deal was agreed in 1994, the U.S. trade balance with Mexico has gone from a $1.3 billion surplus to a $64 billion deficit in 2016. Both countries, in addition to the USA, are signors to the 1994 NAFTA trade deal.

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