Trump Officially Starts NAFTA Renegotiation Countdown

The White House formally started the countdown to renegotiate the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) by sending notification to Congress. It created a trade agreement between Canada - Mexico and the United States, essentially getting rid of import or export taxes.

"While every partnership has disagreements to occasionally be resolved, the U.S". So were many trade barriers in the auto industry.

Ms Freeland said in a statement on Thursday that the country remains "steadfastly committed to free trade in the North American region". It would be, in other words, a victory for everyone. American companies from Ford Motor Co.to General Electric Co. and Caterpillar Inc. have manufacturing facilities in Mexico, taking advantage of lower labor costs. In 1992, USA presidential candidate Ross Perot famously predicted "a giant sucking sound" as American jobs migrated south across the border.

NAFTA forced the abandonment of the countryside by the Mexican government, effectively expelling millions of peasants who emigrated to the United States and opening the doors to the growth of the narcotics trade - and hence to the control of vast rural territories by organized crime. But so did America's trade deficit with Mexico.

Meanwhile, the letter he sent to lawmakers to kickstart consultations omitted numerous thorny points cited in an earlier draft, such as leveling the playing field on tax treatment and bulking up "Buy America" procurement provisions-goals that might meet stiff resistance from Canada and Mexico.

Canada and Mexico have only limited room to make deep concessions given their domestic political situations, and Mexico has elections next year that could complicate any protracted talks. While the US ships more oil and refined products to Mexico than it imports, American refiners are heavy consumers of Canadian oil. She defended the trade deal, which has been updated 11 times, but stressed that Canada will seek to get the best deal for its citizens. And trade with Mexico is a smaller portion still.

"We have to be careful not to lose what we gained ..." "NAFTA is a trilateral agreement and the conversations need to be trilateral in nature". "We agree with Ambassador Lighthizer that the current NAFTA agreement has areas upon which we can build as the renegotiation process begins, including the market we have developed in Mexico", said Jim Mulhern, president and CEO of NMPF.

Lighthizer noted in his letter to Congress that the economy and businesses have changed considerably in the 25 years since NAFTA was negotiated but the agreement has not. Or it could take a more aggressive approach, putting pressure on Mexico to reduce the trade gap, perhaps by dropping a value-added tax Mexico slaps on goods coming across the border.

However, the next day Trump tweeted that he would still terminate the agreement "if we do not reach a fair deal for all".

"We can do constructive work together", she said, bringing them up to the 21st century standards Canadians expect.

"The United States seeks to support higher-paying jobs in the United States and to grow the U.S. economy by improving USA opportunities under NAFTA, " Lighthizer wrote.

Mexican foreign minister Luis Videgaray, speaking at a news conference with secretary of state Rex Tillerson in Washington, said the trade pact needed to be updated after almost 25 years. "That is our position".