Preliminary U.S.-Mexico trade deal leaves trail of uncertainty

U.S. And Mexico Reach Trade Deal; Trump Wants To Drop NAFTA Name

On Monday, President Donald Trump announced the USA and Mexico reached a bilateral trade agreement to replace NAFTA, which Trump calls the United States-Mexico Trade Agreement.

Of the new trade deal, Lighthizer told reporters, "I think it's going to set the rules for the future at the highest standards in any agreement yet negotiated by any two nations for things like intellectual property and digital trade and financial services trade and all of the things that we think of as the modernizing, cutting-edge places that our economy is going".

"Mexico made a quantum shift from where they were thanks, I think, to their new president who argued that NAFTA was awful for Mexican workers who got the jobs but not the pay", he said.

In announcing the "United States-Mexico Trade Agreement", U.S. President Donald Trump declared the current NAFTA dead and threatened Canada with tariffs if it didn't sign on to the revised terms worked out with Mexico. Vehicles must use more domestic steel and aluminum, with more parts made domestically, and much of the manufacturing labor must be provided by workers earning at least $16 per hour, The New York Times reported.

Canada's foreign minister flew to Washington, DC on Tuesday to resume negotiations for the North American Free Trade Agreement (Nafta). In the past, Mexico has insisted that any NAFTA deal be trilateral, and Peña Nieto seemed to suggest a similar vein of thinking Monday, repeatedly telling Trump that he wanted Canada to be a part of the new deal.

Mr. Trump said he would not stand for continue high tariffs on USA dairy products, and threatened to simply keep Canada out and impose tariffs on autos.

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The No. 2 Senate Republican, John Cornyn of Texas, hailed the "positive step" but said Canada needs to be party to a final deal.

Instead, the United States and Mexico agreed to a 16-year lifespan for the deal, with a review every six years that can extend the pact for 16 years, Lighthizer said. He labeled NAFTA "seriously out of whack" in a way that "led to large trade deficits" and said it needed updating. Today, the loonie is at its strongest against the USA dollar in more than two months.

As the cameras rolled, the USA president pressed a button on his phone and said: "And I believe the President is on the phone". Mexico wants Canada a part of it. Those two facts collided this afternoon during a press spray in the Oval Office when Trump tried to put Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto on speakerphone while announcing a new trade deal between the us and Mexico. Both U.S. and Mexican officials said Monday they are now focused on Canada.

"President Trump can say we shouldn't even call this NAFTA, but the president can also say we shouldn't call an animal with a long neck a giraffe". The administration didn't go into specifics, but said the proposed United States-Mexico Trade Agreement is a "mutually beneficial win for North American farmers, ranchers, workers and businesses". Brady said he looked forward "to carefully analyzing the details and consulting in the weeks ahead to determine whether the new proposal meets the trade priorities set out by Congress". "Rather than scrapping the existing investor state dispute tribunals, the latest agreement would exempt some industries, but allow the existing system to continue covering industries like energy, mining and telecoms, where firms bid for government permits and licenses".

Mr. Trump has the authority to renegotiate NAFTA as a trilateral agreement, so Canada must be involved, said Michelle Casario, an assistant professor of economics at Villanova University.


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