Canada and Mexico have now appointed negotiating teams of seasoned professionals. Canada also has created a NAFTA Council comprised of public and private sector experts from the energy, auto, labor and agricultural fields. Negotiations will begin in the U.S. during the week of August 16. The next round has already been set to take place in Mexico for the week of September 10. Mexico would like the talks completed by the end of the year, well ahead of the 2018 Presidential election next July. The U.S. has so far acquiesced to such a schedule; however, the Canadians may not be as accommodating.
The Mexican government has raised labor issues regarding customs and visa procedures and temporary workers while the U.S. Congressional hearings have highlighted issues relating to specific industries including dairy, beef, seasonal agricultural products, and the oil and gas industry. The Canadians continue to raise cultural preferences as a NAFTA exception which could affect the ability of U.S. film, music, radio, print and other information to be freely shared in Canada under the trade deal. Finally, dispute resolution will likely be a contentious issue.
Below please find a short video regarding the Trump Administration’s efforts to renegotiate NAFTA with Mexico and Canada from an interview last week with CGTN’s Rachelle Akuffo.