Trade Watch 2018: NAFTA Lives

The United States, Canada, and Mexico have reached agreement on a modernized NAFTA (North American Free Trade Agreement), now to be called the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA).

After months of negotiating trilaterally, the US and Mexico reached an agreement that excluded Canada, which was left to negotiate separately with the U.S. Several deadlines for conclusion of the US-Canada negotiations came and went. Despite the public trading of words between the Trump and Trudeau Administrations, however, American and Canadian trade negotiators continued to work to reach an agreement.

Both the US and Canada needed to find a compromise on their major areas of contention. And they did. Canada agreed to give US dairy farmers greater access to its market and to extend patent protection for biologics, sticking points for the US negotiators. The U.S., for its part, agreed to keep the provisions for resolving trade disputes and to protect Canada’s auto industry from any future tariffs on auto imports.

NAFTA lives but with significant changes. The trade community will now begin to read the text of the new agreement to more fully understand its provisions. How could your company be impacted by the new “NAFTA”? Contact us to learn more or for assistance.

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