The North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) will be renegotiated in August. If you export to Canada or Mexico or source from these countries, NAFTA changes will likely affect you.
What’s behind NAFTA modernization? This trilateral treaty—among the US, Canada and Mexico - dates back nearly 25 years. Since NAFTA took effect, the Internet and smart phones have come to play a major role in business sales and distribution. Industry sectors, cycles and supply chains have changed dramatically. So there’s nearly universal agreement that NAFTA needs to be updated.
NAFTA negotiators are being encouraged to:
- do no harm
- be timely
- avoid erecting new trade barriers, and
- make NAFTA better for U.S. consumers, businesses and workers.
Here in Massachusetts, NAFTA has brought great benefits. Trade between Massachusetts and its two closest neighbors has soared over the past two decades. Canada is the Bay State’s top trade partner, with more than $3 billion in Massachusetts-made products shipped to Canada in 2016.
Last year, Mexico was the second-largest destination for Massachusetts products, with $2.5 Billion in Massachusetts goods shipped to our neighbor south of the border. More than a quarter of a million jobs in Massachusetts, many in manufacturing, depend on trade with Canada and Mexico.
AIM strongly supports NAFTA. The association will submit comments on NAFTA to the federal government and we urge AIM members to do so as well. We have already heard from a number of member companies and we encourage businesses - especially manufacturers - to share their stories of how NAFTA has helped them grow. These personal narratives can be shared with AIM, your industry association, your US Congressional Representatives and the US Trade Representative.
To send a NAFTA letter to the Federal Register Notice (FRN), which must be done by Monday, visit www.regulations.gov and search for docket number USTR-2017-0006. Then click the “Comment Now!” button to make sure your comments are registered.
Please contact Kristen Rupert at AIM, [email protected], with any questions about NAFTA renegotiation.