Ditching NAFTA Not in America’s Best Interests

10/28/2017 Houston Chronicle

By Earl Anthony Wayne

Texas has the most to lose of any U.S. state if NAFTA talks go wrong. It has a great deal to gain if the talks to modernize NAFTA go well. Now that the negotiations have slowed over controversial U.S. proposals, Texans and their elected federal and state representatives should be making very clear to the Trump administration team overseeing the NAFTA negotiations that they should do no harm to the massive Texas-Mexico trade relationship, and rather focus on creating new opportunities.

The controversial U.S. proposals and hardball tactics, however, could freeze the talks or send them off the tracks. A decision to pull out of NAFTA, as President Trump has threatened, could cost 250,000 to 1.2 million U.S. jobs, according to one 2017 study. A failed NAFTA negotiation would endanger many thousands of Texas jobs, the state’s largest foreign client and cooperation along the border.

Texas trades $178 billion a year with Mexico. That is more than the entire United States trades with any single country in Europe. It translates into over $20 million of trade each hour: Things are bigger in Texas!

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NAFTA Negotiators Accuse US of Pushing Policies Mexico and Canada Will Never Agree With

10/2/2017 PanamPost

The United States continues to propose controversial ideas during NAFTA renegotiations, which could jeopardize any chance of reaching a final deal within the stipulated time frame, according to officials from both Canada and Mexico.

The US’ proposals for public procurement, textiles and fresh produce, those officials said, are imposing a “red line” with little legitimate chance of resulting in an agreement between the three countries.

According to the officials, who spoke on condition of anonymity, the third round of NAFTA renegotiations — which took place in Ottawa — was a scene to numerous negative incidents, especially compared to previous meetings. Officials reportedly expect additional confrontation to take place as a result during the fourth negotiation meeting, set to be held in Washington, D.C. between October 11 and 15.

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Survey: Economists see no gain from NAFTA renegotiation

9/24/2017 The Seattle Times

Most business economists expect the Trump administration’s efforts to renegotiate the North American Free Trade Agreement will make no difference to the U.S. economy or cause harm.

The National Association for Business Economics survey of 47 economists found that one-third think the renegotiation will have no impact, while one-fifth think it will harm the economy slightly. Seven percent see its impact as strongly or moderately negative.

One-quarter said the renegotiation will be slightly positive while 9 percent said it would be moderately positive. The survey covered economists who work for large companies, trade associations, consulting firms, and universities.

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Canada Nafta Negotiator Sees More Movement Than Labor Leader

9/24/2017 Bloomberg

Talks toward reworking the North American Free Trade Agreement are progressing well, even though the U.S. hasn’t made detailed proposals in some of the most divisive areas, Canada’s chief negotiator said.

Steve Verheul, speaking to reporters Sunday in Ottawa during the third round of talks, said the tone remains constructive and there’s no signal the U.S. will walk away, though he said several U.S. proposals have yet to be revealed.

“We’re making good solid progress,” Verheul said, declining to commit to meeting the December target for a deal. “The endgame is always the hardest part and impossible to predict.”

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U.S. Commerce chief: U.S. content falling in Mexican, Canadian imports

Flag_of_the_North_American_Free_Trade_Agreement_(standard_version).svg09/21/2017 Reuters

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross said on Thursday a new study by his department shows that U.S. value-added content is declining for manufactured goods imported from Mexico and Canada, arguing that this required tougher rules of origin in the North American Free Trade Agreement.

In a Washington Post opinion piece preview of the report to be released on Friday, Ross said the analysis of recently released OECD trade in value-added data shows a marked decline in U.S. content in automotive imports from Canada and Mexico from 1995 through 2011.

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Mexico, Canada economies set to emerge from NAFTA talks intact

09/20/2017 Reuters

Flag_of_the_North_American_Free_Trade_Agreement_(standard_version).svgBENGALURU/SAO PAULO (Reuters) – Mexico and Canada will survive current talks with the United States on trade relatively unscathed, according to a Reuters poll of economists, suggesting U.S. President Donald Trump’s protectionist threats still have more bark than bite.

Trump’s repeated attacks on the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), the world’s largest trade area by gross domestic product, unnerved policymakers and exporters both north and south of the border given how much the countries have at stake.

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Push for Nafta Overhaul May Fall Short, U.S. Negotiator Says

9/18/2017 The New York Times

The top United States trade negotiator said Monday that it was unclear whether Canada, Mexico and the United States could reach a deal to overhaul the North American Free Trade Agreement within the ambitious timetable set by the Trump administration.

In remarks ahead of a third round of talks beginning on Saturday in Ottawa, Robert Lighthizer, the United States trade representative, said negotiators were “moving at warp speed, but we don’t know whether we’re going to get to a conclusion, that’s the problem.”

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