What you need to know about NAFTA as it goes through a quarter-life crisis

8/18/2017 The Washington Post

Clinton signing NAFTA

NAFTA: The trade pact has stirred debate and controversy for more than two decades.

President Trump used the North American Free Trade Agreement as a lightning rod during his election campaign last year. At his rallies, Trump called the trade pact — which eliminated almost all tariffs and other trade barriers between the United States, Mexico and Canada — a disaster, the worst trade deal in U.S. history. NAFTA, he said, had spurred the decline in the U.S. manufacturing industry and encouraged a wave of illegal immigration from Mexico. As president, he came ever so close to terminating the agreement in April.

Yet while NAFTA looms large in political rhetoric, most Americans probably couldn’t tell you who wrote the pact and why, what’s at stake in its renegotiation and how profoundly it has already influenced their lives.

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Canada and Mexico play defence on Nafta’s future

8/18/2017 Financial Times 

There are many areas — tax cuts, infrastructure spending, healthcare — in which Donald Trump’s grandiose plans have come to nothing. Thus far, the same is true of one of the US president’s foremost obsessions, trade — and specifically, attempting to redress the US deficit with individual countries by changing the rules of trade. Mr Trump has failed to carry out threats to put currency tariffs on China, or to punish US companies that have created jobs overseas. And having made a great song and dance about taking on Beijing, this week’s vaunted announcement about China’s intellectual property violations turned out to be an investigation that is likely to stretch well into next year.

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NAFTA talks must include discussion on fintech: Mexican negotiator

8/16/2017 Reuters 

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Talks to renegotiate the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) must include a discussion of new financial services, a Mexican negotiator said on Wednesday, singling out so-called fintech companies rapidly gaining ground in the region.

Created 23 years ago, NAFTA includes Canada, Mexico and the United States and is being renegotiated at the behest of U.S. President Donald Trump who made a campaign promise to get a better deal for U.S. workers.

Vanessa Rubio, an undersecretary at Mexico’s finance ministry who is taking part in the NAFTA negotiations that began in Washington on Wednesday, said discussions on financial services had found common ground between the three countries.

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What Impact Could a Remade Nafta Have On You?

8/16/2017 The Wall Street Journal Video 

Representatives of the U.S., Canada and Mexico are kicking off talks to renegotiate the North American free trade agreement on Wednesday. The WSJ’s Shelby Holiday looks at how that could change the prices of the cars, tacos and clothes you buy. Photo: Evan Engel

 

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This is what the US, Canada, and Mexico want from renegotiating Nafta

8/16/2017 Quartz

Clinton signing NAFTA

More than 20 years ago, then-US president Bill Clinton signed the North American Free Trade Agreement between the US, Canada, and Mexico into law. Today, prodded by president Donald Trump, negotiators from the three countries will start talks to revamp it.

As a presidential candidate, Trump bashed the deal, which went into effect in 1994, as a symbol of all that’s wrong with globalization. He’s since toned down his Nafta criticism and his administration’s stated goals for the renegotiation were milder than expected. But as with all things Trump, how aggressively the administration will promote his “America First” agenda is hard to predict.

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What’s at stake as Nafta talks begin?

8/16/2017 BBC

Trade talks might in the past have signalled a dry and dusty item on the news agenda, but the renegotiation of Nafta under President Trump has become a political hot potato.

Mr Trump has called this free trade agreement between the US, Canada and Mexico a jobs “killer” and a “disaster”, and pledged to repeal it.

But in April, he pulled back and agreed to discuss “modernising” the North America Free Trade Agreement.

Talks between the three countries about overhauling the pact start in Washington on Wednesday.

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Participación del Secretario de Economía, Ildefonso Guajardo Villarreal

Secretaría de Economía 8/16/2017 

Durante la Conferencia de Prensa trilateral con motivo del inicio de negociaciones para la modernización del TLCAN

Washington, D.C. 16 de agosto de 2017.

Embajador Robert Lighthizer,

Ministra Chrystia Freeland,

Amigos e invitados especiales:

Buenos días a todos.

Me alegra reunirme con ustedes el día de hoy para anunciar formalmente el inicio de la primera ronda de negociaciones para la modernización del Tratado de Libre Comercio de América del Norte (TLCAN).

Miembros de la prensa, gracias por acompañarnos.

Desde su entrada en vigor, el TLCAN ha sido más que un acuerdo comercial. Nos permitió vernos como una región.

Gracias al TLCAN, pasamos de sólo compartir la geografía, a configurar una visión compartida de América del Norte.

Hemos caminado juntos por más de dos décadas y, ahora mismo, a pesar del éxito obtenido, debemos preguntarnos si este modelo de integración responde a la realidad actual.

Entonces, estamos aquí una vez más, como lo hicimos en 1991, cara a cara; dispuestos a renovar nuestra alianza norteamericana.

El proceso que inicia hoy no se trata de ver hacia el pasado, sino de ver hacia el futuro.

México cree  que el TLCAN ha sido un éxito rotundo para todas las Partes y estamos también de acuerdo en que hay espacio para modernizarlo, a fin de hacerlo un acuerdo aún más exitoso.

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