Nafta Deadline Arrives With Little Prospect for an Agreement via Bloomberg @bpolitics

05/17/2018 Bloomberg

LighthizerHouse Speaker Paul Ryan warned a new Nafta deal had to be completed by Thursday, but President Donald Trump’s trade chief told lawmakers he expects that deadline will not be met.

Citing American trade law, Ryan had said May 17 was the last day to receive notice of intent to sign a deal for a new North American Free Trade Agreement that could be passed by the current Congress before a new crop of lawmakers change the political calculus. Talks, however, remain hung up on key issues.

U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer told lawmakers in a meeting on Wednesday that he didn’t think a deal could be completed by then or in the immediate term, according to two Democratic representatives who attended the meeting.

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A new NAFTA will probably not get done this year. Now what? via @politico

05/16/2018 Politico

NAFTADivisions among NAFTA negotiators on complex and controversial issues are driving a stake through the heart of President Donald Trump’s goal of signing a new agreement into law this year.

After nine months of intense negotiating rounds in all three countries, officials remain as far apart as ever on some of the biggest changes the administration has put forward, including ones related to auto manufacturing and Canada and Mexico‘s access to the U.S. government procurement market.

And without major concessions from Canada and Mexico, or a willingness from the U.S. to drop its most difficult demands, top negotiators will be unable this week to wrap up weighty issues that remain unresolved, those close to the talks say.

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Negotiations over NAFTA are bogging down ahead of a major deadline

05/09/2018 The Washington Post

automobileNegotiations over a new North American trade deal have hit a major snag, leaving White House officials increasingly uncertain of their ability to hit their May 18 deadline for securing congressional approval of a new deal before year’s end.

The main stumbling block involves a dispute over determining which automobiles are given duty-free treatment under the agreement, according to five industry and U.S. government sources.

After almost nine months of negotiations, the United States and its trading partners , Canada and Mexico, remain far apart on a host of contentiousissues, including U.S. demands that the treaty must be renewed every five years.

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The Biggest Nafta Hurdle Now May Be Congress

04/25/2018 The New York Times

NAFTAThe United States is pushing to quickly conclude a revised North American Free Trade Agreement during talks in Washington this week, but another, potentially insurmountable obstacle looms: getting such a deal through Congress.

A revised deal with Canada and Mexico will need approval from the Senate and House, which, under current trade laws, must pass the revamped agreement by a simple majority. But Republicans may balk at some of the provisions, including overhauls to investment rules that help companies invest abroad, while Democrats, who have long criticized the existing deal, may argue that President Trump’s changes do not go far enough.

Congressional approval has become the latest sticking point in the revamp of a trade pact that, after eight months of fractious negotiations, could finally be in reach.

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Trump says new NAFTA deal could be completed quickly

04/24/2018 Reuters

trumpmexico_083116getty_0U.S. President Donald Trump said on Tuesday that a new NAFTA trade deal could be completed quickly, as ministers from Canada, Mexico and the United States prepared to meet later in the day to try to work out their differences and hash out an agreement.

“NAFTA, as you know, is moving along. They (Mexico) have an election coming up very soon. And it will be interesting to see what happens with that election,” Trump said at a cabinet meeting briefly attended by reporters.

“But we’re doing very nicely with NAFTA. I could make a deal really quickly, but I’m not sure that’s in the best interests of the United States. But we’ll see what happens,” he added.

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In Mexico’s own Motor City, billion-dollar investments but also fear of Trump’s trade moves

04/23/2018 Los Angeles Times

Guanajuato by flickr user magnusvk
Photo by Flickr user Magnusvk

In a swath of Mexico locals call the “New Detroit,” General Motors is hiring hundreds of workers and expanding operations at a truck factory. BMW is on track to finish building an assembly plant next year.

Just last month, Canadian parts manufacturer Linamar announced it would pour $50 million into expanding operations at two of its Mexican plants.

Still, President Trump’s tough talk on trade has rattled El Bajio, as this industrial region in central Mexico is known, to its core.

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Trump’s Message to Congress: New Nafta or No Nafta

04/23/2018 The Wall Street Journal

NAFTAThe Trump administration is pushing hard to finish talks on the North American Free Trade Agreement over the next two weeks and is considering bare-knuckle tactics to get Congress to approve a new deal.

President Donald Trump has repeatedly signaled his willingness to withdraw from Nafta entirely if he doesn’t get a renegotiated deal he deems more favorable to American workers.

The administration used the same strategy to bring Canada and Mexico to the table. But some in Congress—especially members of the GOP—say they are prepared to resist the approach if it is turned on them.

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