What Are the U.S. Goals for the NAFTA Renegotiation?

On July 17, 2017 the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative released its Summary of Objectives for the NAFTA Renegotiation.

The objectives set the tone for the upcoming NAFTA renegotiation talks between Mexico, Canada and the U.S. that could begin as early as August 16, 2017.

What are some of the goals of the U.S.?

  • Elimination of Chapter 19
  • Increase in the tax free thresholds for online purchases
  • Increased access for U.S. agricultural exports (includes wine, grain and dairy)

Much has been said about the seemingly contradictory nature of the goals cited in the document. While the document calls for greater opportunities for American suppliers to access government procurement abroad, it also calls to limit those very opportunities for Mexico and Canada in support of its Buy American policies.

Calls from the U.S. for the elimination of Chapter 19, the binational dispute settlement mechanism process for challenging anti-dumping and countervailing measures, could become a strong point of contention. In the original NAFTA talks in the 1980’s, this very issue almost shut down the signing of the deal. Since implementation of NAFTA, the U.S. has been the target of the most of the cases brought before the Chapter 19 panel.

Office of the United States Trade Representative, Summary of Objectives for the NAFTA Renegotiation: https://ustr.gov/sites/default/files/files/Press/Releases/NAFTAObjectives.pdf

Maclean’s, U.S. Releases NAFTA Objectives, http://www.macleans.ca/politics/u-s-releases-nafta-objectives/

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