Washington, April 25 (IANS) US Trade Representative (USTR) Robert Lighthizer has notified Congress that the US-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA), which replaces the 26-year-old North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), will enter into force on July 1.
Following the notification to Congress, the US became the third country to notify the other parties that it had completed its domestic procedures to implement the agreement, the final step necessary for the USMCA to enter into force, according to the USTR’s Office.
The crisis and recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic demonstrates that now, more than ever, the US should strive to increase manufacturing capacity and investment in North America,” Xinhua news agency quoted Lighthizer as saying on Friday.
“The USMCA’s entry into force is a landmark achievement in that effort.
“The USTR will continue working to ensure a smooth implementation of the USMCA so that American workers and businesses can enjoy the benefits of the new agreement,” he said.
While the USMCA modernizes trading rules and strengthens the enforcement of labour and environmental rights, its restrictions on auto trade and investment and on auto production will hurt the US industry, according to an analysis published by the Peterson Institute for International Economics (PIIE).
Leaders of the three countries signed the USMCA in late 2018, and the agreement needs to be ratified by lawmakers in each country before it can be implemented.