US, Canada, Mexico Sign Trade Deal, Trump Predicts Congress Approval
US, Canada, Mexico Sign Trade Deal, Trump Predicts Congress Approval
Trump signs trade deal with Canada and Mexico
02 December, 2018, 16:45
President Donald Trump signed a new trade deal with Mexico and Canada at a ceremony Thursday in Buenos Aires, Argentina, predicting it would be "the envy of nations all around the world". The agreement will still need Congressional approval.
The signing of the so-called free trade agreement comes at a time when tens of billions of dollars of tariffs remain in place on goods traded among the three countries.
Foreign brand automakers have expressed concerns that the new rules of origin, which require more high-value content be produced in the United States or Canada, will be too burdensome.
Trump added that the treaty would promote high wages, citing autoworkers as primary beneficiaries.
"The new agreement secures strong outcomes for farmers, ranchers, businesses, and workers across North America, including in areas such as auto manufacturing and intellectual property".
Among the areas getting the most scrutiny were concessions over Canada's protection of its dairy market, including reducing barriers for American farmers to sell cheese, milk and other products to Canada.
The legislation will also reportedly cut back on auto imports, bringing back 75-percent of auto manufacturing jobs to the U.S.in a bid to restore American dominance in the auto market.
With an early tweet, Trump defended the continued negotiations by his private company over a proposed luxury tower in Moscow while he was running for president in 2016, saying it was "very legal & very cool".
Even at the signing ceremony, there were echoes of the uncomfortable background to the USMCA, which Trump has made exhibit number one in his case to voters that he is putting "America first". His "new deal" is hardly new, is failing to live up to his promises, and leaves many problems of his own making left to be solved. After the signing, USA trade chief Robert Lighthizer told reporters that negotiations are ongoing but that they see the tariffs as successful policy, CBC reported. The provision, which has attracted a lot of attention and praise, essentially blocks any trade flirtation with China.
"FMI is pleased and encouraged by today's signing of the USMCA", said Andrew Harig, senior director for sustainability, tax and trade at the Arlington, Va. -based Food Marketing Institute.
President Donald Trump is hailing a revised North American trade deal as if nothing existed before it. The news ensured any meeting with Putin would have put a spotlight on the US special counsel's investigation into whether the Trump campaign colluded with Moscow during the election.
So important. I'm honored to be here with president Enrique Peña Nieto, become a great friend of Mexico, and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau who has also become a great friend.
"It is really an incredible way to end a presidency. We'll see what happens".
Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, however, refered to the agreement as the "new NAFTA".
"This is not something where we have a piece of paper we can say yes or no to", she said at a news conference on Friday, noting that Mexico had yet to pass a law on wages and working conditions.
"Our objective has always been to sign this agreement on November 30 and we are on track to hit that objective", Freeland said shortly after the Canadian delegation arrived in Argentina for the two-day summit.
Tsunami warnings remain in effect elsewhere across the Pacific. "It shook like I have never felt anything shake before", she said. While damage assessments are underway, seismologist Lucy Jones said Alaskans can expected to be impacted for awhile.
This will be the final meeting of BRICS Leaders chaired by South Africa before Brazil assumes the Presidency on 1 January 2019. USA officials in recent days have also renewed their criticism of Beijing in advance of the Xi-Trump meeting.
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The list of named individuals does not include Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman , who is in Argentina for the G20 summit . Mr Corker said senators would have a chance to vote to proceed to the resolution next week as well as vote on amendments.
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