U.S. seeking major overhaul of NAFTA, not tweaks

U.S. seeking major overhaul of NAFTA, not tweaks

U.S. seeking major overhaul of NAFTA, not tweaks

"So that's a line they don't want to cross", Hufbauer said.

Lighthizer says the USA government has certified at least 700,000 Americans have lost their jobs due to NAFTA.

"The views of [President Donald Trump on NAFTA] which I completely share are well-known", he said.

She said U.S. -Canada trade was fairly balanced, with the U.S. actually having a small surplus when services are taken into account.

As the three NAFTA countries of Mexico, the US and Canada began what could be a long drawn-out battle to revamp the agreement, New Mexico has a lot at stake.

The U.S. trade representative, Robert Lighthizer, said in opening remarks that NAFTA "has failed" Americans as a result of trade deficits.

NAFTA supersedes the earlier US-Canada bilateral free trade agreement, signed in 1988. They want to get it done before the Mexico election next summer, although both USA and Mexican officials have said they would like to conclude negotiations before the end of the year. He went on to say that the agreement had cost America hundreds of thousands of jobs. Trade in steel products between NAFTA countries has increased by 117.2 percent, more than doubling, since the NAFTA was put in place. The administration has not publicly identified a specific percentage of minimum domestic content that it would like to see.

One of the US priorities is changing the auto production rules to require cars to include more American parts. Others include stronger country of origin rules and labour standards, and a dispute resolution mechanism that respects national sovereignty and democratic processes.

Recently 32 House Republicans sent a letter to the USA trade representative, agreeing an update should happen but noting that they are "also keenly aware of the potential for damage to US farmers, businesses, manufacturers, service providers and workers if long-standing agreements are suddenly vacated". This is simply wrong-and if it becomes his litmus test for the new Nafta, the talks could easily do serious harm.

Cuellar says millions of jobs have been created because of NAFTA and disagrees with President Trump's plan to eliminate it.

Trump made criticizing NAFTA a focal point for his campaign for the presidency, describing it as "the worst deal ever made in the history of the world".

"This has been a good trade treaty for North American agriculture from Mexico to Canada and we want to make sure that we have our voice heard loud and clear", said Zippy Duvall, president of the American Farm Bureau Federation. And it worth pointing out that we are the biggest client of the United States.

USA crude CLc1 prices were up 0.19 percent to $47.64 a barrel.

The Canadians may be characteristically polite as they carry out negotiations to amend the North American Free Trade Agreement, but apparently they won't be pushovers.

He cited Mexico's sales of fruits and vegetables to the U.S.as an example.

He said Canada has, and always will be, a trading nation and opportunities for growth for Canadian companies depend on improving competitive access to the market. "Our approach stems from one essential insight, we pursue trade free and fair, knowing it is not a zero-sum game".

The first round of NAFTA talks, which will last until Sunday, are expected to focus on consolidating the proposals and demands from all three countries.

He continued, "The U.S. administration is looking to strike a balance, making real changes to an agreement they believe needs to more directly benefit U.S. workers, while not disrupting it in ways that hurt U.S. businesses".

"The issue is not tearing apart what works, but rather making our agreement work better", Mexico's economy secretary Ildefonso Guajardo said on Wednesday.

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