Decisions on trio of trade partners loom large for US in 2018

01/10/2018 The Hill

CSCL_Globe_arriving_at_Felixstowe,_United_Kingdom (1)By Earl Anthony Wayne

The Trump administration has China, Canada and Mexico at the top of the trade agenda for 2018. Decisions are pending about trade sanctions on China and about modernizing or leaving the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA).

These are America’s top-three trading partners and export markets. Millions of U.S. jobs and many billions of dollars in trade and investment are in the balance, as are key U.S. strategic interests. The costs of missteps can be very high.

The U.S. administration is considering imposing trade penalties on its largest trading partner, China, for intellectual property (IP) theft and forced technology transfers, for underpricing solar panels sold in the U.S. and for subsidizing the cost of steel and aluminum exports to the U.S.

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3 ways Trump can slap tariffs on China and Mexico

11/14/16 CNN Money 

pesoPresident-elect Donald Trump has threatened to slap big tariffs on China and Mexico to help bring jobs back to America.

At first glance, it may seem hard to do without backing from Congress. But actually, Trump doesn’t even need Congress to approve it.

True, the Constitution gives Congress the right to impose tariffs on other nations. However, several complicated laws have been passed in the last 100 years that delegate that power from Congress to the president.

Trump has several options — each open to interpretation — but here are three key ways he can go after China and Mexico.

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California sees surge in Chinese illegally crossing border from Mexico

06/07/2016 Los Angeles Times

border3The number of Chinese immigrants illegally crossing the Mexican border into California has skyrocketed in recent years, the result of a lucrative smuggling industry, mass migration from China and a diversifying pool of migrants settling in the United States.

Between October and May, the first eight months of the fiscal year, Border Patrol agents in the San Diego sector apprehended an estimated 663 Chinese nationals, compared with 48 in the entire previous fiscal year and eight in the year before that, according to data provided by U.S. Customs and Border Protection.

Before then, “we just weren’t getting [Chinese nationals],” said Wendi Lee, a spokeswoman for the Border Patrol.

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Immigration Shift Shows India, China Outpacing Mexico

8/29/15 ABC News

mexico-chinaSiddharth Jaganath wanted to return to India after earning his master’s degree at Texas’ Southern Methodist University. Instead, he built a new life in the U.S. over a decade, becoming a manager at a communications technology company and starting a family in the Dallas suburb of Plano. “You start growing your roots and eventually end up staying here,” the 37-year-old said.

His path is an increasingly common one: Immigrants from China and India, many with student or work visas, have overtaken Mexicans as the largest groups coming into the U.S., according to U.S. Census Bureau research released in May. The shift has been building for more than a decade and experts say it’s bringing more highly skilled immigrants here. And some Republican presidential candidates have proposed a heavier focus on employment-based migration, which could accelerate traditionally slow changes to the country’s ever-evolving face of immigration.

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Chinese Steel Imports Cause Industry Rift in Mexico

7/9/15 Wall Street Journal

via Flickr - Dave Parker
via Flickr – Dave Parker

The Mexican government’s recent decision to impose anti-dumping duties on some key steel imports from China has sparked a rift between the country’s steel and automotive industries, reigniting a debate over whether Mexico should adopt a more protectionist stance over trade policy.

On Thursday, the government announced several additional measures to support domestic steelmakers, including strengthening customs controls to block the entrance of illegal steel. But authorities stopped short of meeting local industry demands for a 15% blanket tariff on all steel imports from China. Mexico doesn’t apply import tariffs on steel.

As a result of the global steel glut caused by falling demand and excess output by China, Mexican steel producers have announced thousands of layoffs and have been lobbying in recent weeks for the imposition of tariffs.

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Mexico unveils new measures to protect struggling steel industry

7/8/15 Financial Express

technicians making repairs - industry job trainingMexico unveiled news measures to protect its struggling steel industry on Wednesday as slack global demand, oversupply from China and cheap imports from Russia have hammered steelmakers in Latin America’s second largest economy.

The measures come a month after Mexico imposed provisional import duties on hot-rolled steel from Germany, China and France amid an anti dumping investigation.

Later in June, the government announced import duties on cold-rolled steel sheet from China.

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China Rail Builder Seeks Compensation Over Canceled Mexico Bullet-Train Project

By Carlos Tejada, 2/3/2015

Train Tracks by HeraldicosBEIJING—A Chinese rail-construction company is seeking compensation from Mexican officials stemming from a halted $3.7 billion Mexican high-speed-rail project.

In a statement Tuesday to the Shanghai stock exchange, China Railway Construction Corp. said it was still in negotiations with “the Mexican side and will update if there is important progress.” It didn’t offer further details, but said the postponement won’t have a major effect on its operations.

In November, CRCC warned it would resort to legal means to protect its interests after the contract was revoked.

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