NAFTA renegotiations: Which side are you on?

WHAT IT IS

WHY IT MATTERS

NAFTA has a large impact on the U.S. economy and its relations with its neighbors to the north and south, so a renegotiation could have a lasting effect. It is unknown what kind of impact a renegotiation or withdrawal would have on the U.S. economy. President Trump has been defiant about its adverse effects; however, Canada and Mexico believe it has been beneficial for all sides.

  • PRO NAFTA – “Good for all!”

    • Exports:   Since NAFTA was signed in 1994, U.S. trade has more than tripled with its North American neighbors. Canada and Mexico now are the two largest importers of U.S. products.
    • GDP and jobs:   NAFTA increased U.S. gross domestic product (GDP) by adding up to $80 billion to the economy, including the addition of nearly 14 million jobs.
    • Automatization:   Many economists argue that U.S. manufacturing jobs were decreasing before NAFTA, due to automatization and China’s leap into manufacturing.
  • ANTI NAFTA – “Hurting the US!”

    • Trade deficit:   Americans buy $55.6 billion more goods and services from Mexico than Mexico buys from the United States.
    • Pro-corporate:   Trade deals often benefit corporations, not individuals. The statistics may show that trade is positively in a macro sense, but it does not account for the micro impact on communities that depend upon blue collar jobs.
    • Globalization:   NAFTA led companies to cut costs and export jobs, which put non-college educated workers in direct competition with lower paid workers in other countries such as Mexico.

WHERE WE ARE NOW

  • U.S., Mexico, and Canada started renegotiations for NAFTA on August 16th, 2017, with strong criticisms from the Trump administration on the agreement.
  • Canada and Mexico downplayed the U.S.’s scrutiny of NAFTA and their focus on trade deficits.

THINGS TO THINK ABOUT