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Trump, Mexico Reach Trade Deal

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President Donald Trump has reached an agreement with Mexico on a potential replacement to NAFTA. The two sides agreed to the U.S.-Mexico Trade Deal, a pact contingent on Congressional approval.

The primary change from the existing NAFTA agreement in the new pact, besides the current exclusion of Canada, is a modification on the rules of origin on automobile production.

The American Iron and Steel Institute expressed support for the push toward a new, modernized trade agreement.

“NAFTA has provided significant benefits for the steel industry. It has resulted in increased U.S. steel exports to Mexico and Canada, strengthened manufacturing supply chains, especially with key customer groups like the automotive industry, and has resulted in a stronger relationship with Canada and Mexico which has been beneficial in working together on the ongoing global steel overcapacity crisis. However, after 24 years, it is time for the NAFTA to be modernized and strengthened. We appreciate the administration’s hard work in reaching the bilateral understanding with Mexico,” said Thomas Gibson, president and CEO.

However, most members of the supply chain believe that reaching a deal that covers the continent’s three largest countries is imperative.

“Today’s announcement by the United States and Mexico is an important first step toward ensuring continued robust intra-NAFTA trade and investment, but it is now critical that Canada be included in the negotiations and that a new trilateral agreement be reached to update and modernize the NAFTA,” Gibson said.