House Democrats and White House Reach Deal on Modified USMCA Trade Agreement

December 10th, 2019 by Jordan Scott

After more than a year since the U.S., Canada and Mexico came to an agreement on a new trade deal to replace the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), House Democrats and the White House have agreed on new terms for the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA).

In a press conference, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi announced the agreement, citing the crossing of a “threshold of enforcement for workers’ rights, the environment and the prescription drug issue” as reasons for making an agreement. The USMCA still needs to be ratified by Congress and the governments of Mexico and Canada before it will replace NAFTA.

In response to the announcement, President Donald Trump tweeted, “America’s great USMCA Trade Bill is looking good. It will be the best and most important trade deal ever made by the USA. Good for everybody – Farmers, Manufacturers, Energy, Unions – tremendous support. Importantly, we will finally end our Country’s worst Trade Deal, NAFTA!”

Greg Ugalde, chairman of the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) responded to the deal, saying, “NAHB commends President Trump and House Democrats for working together in a bipartisan spirit to reach an agreement on approving the USMCA trade deal, which represents a win for the U.S. economy, a win for American jobs and a win for housing affordability. Many of the products that go into American homes come from Mexico or Canada. By moving swiftly to ratify the USMCA, Congress will help to address the nation’s housing affordability crisis.”

The president and CEO of Plastics Industry Association (PLASTICS), an organization designed to support plastics manufacturers, Tony Radoszewski also voiced support.

“PLASTICS is encouraged to see support growing for the USMCA. We expect this trade deal will have a positive impact on American consumers and businesses and are glad to see the path toward ratification coming into focus. We look forward to reviewing the agreement’s final text and working with Congress to move the USMCA forward.”

The USMCA agreement, originally created among the countries in October 2018, did not remove steel and aluminum tariffs placed on imports from Canada and Mexico. Those tariffs were lifted in May 2019.

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