Sunday, 22 October, 2017

Business leaders say no NAFTA better than bad deal

He sounds like he really means He sounds like he really means
Howard Terry | 13 October, 2017, 00:08

"If the agreement dies overnight, this is going to have an impact on the daily lives of a lot of people, because all of a sudden there's going to be a scarcity of nearly everything that we consume in Mexico-especially on foodstuffs", says the former office head for S&P's Global Ratings in Mexico City.

Asked during his appearance with Trudeau whether NAFTA was dead, Trump said, "We'll see what happens". More than 310 state and local chambers of commerce sent a letter to the administration urging the United States to improve but not end the trilateral agreement that, they said, has contributed to $1.2tn annually in trade.

The meeting, part of a bilateral "CEO dialogue" that meets a couple of times each year, included a closed-door discussion on the NAFTA negotiations addressed by Foreign Minister Luis Videgaray and Economy Minister Idelfonso Guajardo, who are in charge of the negotiations for Mexico.

Reuters says that if Britain did join NAFTA, exporters to the European Union and North America would have to produce goods in accordance with the two separate sets of rules, according to trade analysts.

Freeland describes the US administration as the most protectionist since the 1930s while noting the United States runs a surplus in the trade of goods and services with Canada.

The US president said if there was no deal on the NAFTA, it would be terminated.

Vogel said US and Mexican businesses still believed NAFTA talks would produce a good deal and said they would continue to lobby their governments and lawmakers to negotiate a good deal. Scheduled talks in this session have been extended by two days to Tuesday. Representatives of the auto industry warned some of the USA demands could raise prices for vehicles.

The rules of origin demands are among several conditions that the U.S. Chamber of Commerce has labeled "poison pill proposals" that threaten to torpedo the talks.

USA negotiators have presented a proposal for a so-called "sunset clause" that would see the North American Free Trade Agreement expire after five years unless the parties can agree to extend it, according to two people familiar with the talks. The U.S.is expected to propose substantially raising the regional requirement, from 62.5 percent now, and potentially add a U.S. -specific content requirement.

The hard issue of rules of origin will be addressed mostly at the end of the current talks, according to a schedule obtained by Reuters.

Following the most recent round in Ottawa last month, negotiators said they had made progress on subjects such as telecommunications, competition policy, digital trade, regulation and customs and trade facilitation.

Finance Minister Bill Morneau, in Washington for meetings with G20 finance ministers and the International Monetary Fund, was confronted Thursday with several questions about a possible US exit from NAFTA. -Canada deal that would leave Mexico out entirely.

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