The United States is taking the next steps to renegotiate the globalist North American Free Trade Agreement, Principal Deputy White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said on Monday.
U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) Robert Lighthizer released a comprehensive summary of the Trump administration’s negotiating objectives, with reducing the trade deficit with Canada and Mexico as their main goal. The release of these objectives will lay the groundwork for negotiations that are anticipated to begin later in the summer.
“Under President Trump’s leadership, USTR will negotiate a fair deal,” Lighthizer said in a statement. “We will seek to address America’s persistent trade imbalances, break down trade barriers, and give Americans new opportunities to grow their exports. President Trump is reclaiming American prosperity and making our country great again.”
Since NAFTA was signed into law by former President Bill Clinton back in 1994, the U.S. trade balance with Mexico has gone from a $1.3 billion surplus to a $64 billion deficit. Farmers and ranchers have encountered market access issues with Canada as well.
Along with reducing the trade deficit, the 17-page document outlines provisions to address trade imbalances between the three countries and obtain more “reciprocal” market access. The administration aims to give American farmers and ranchers better market access while simultaneously providing relief for the manufacturing industry.
It also adds a digital economy chapter, increases labor and environmental obligations, and gives the United States the ability to better enforce its trade laws amongst other benefits.
“Politicians have been promising to fix NAFTA for years, but this is the first time that a modern United States free trade agreement has been renegotiated,” Huckabee Sanders said during Tuesday’s press briefing.
The Trump administration’s signature issue on the campaign trail was reversing these imbalances to put American workers first, and he is apparently delivering on those promises. The full text of the USTR Negotiating Objectives for NAFTA can be found here.