Trump Administration’s possible tack on NAFTA | KPMG | US
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Trump Administration’s possible route on NAFTA negotiations

Trump Administration’s possible route on NAFTA

A widely circulated draft letter, from the Trump Administration purportedly intended to be sent to Congress, indicates the administration intends to initiate negotiations related to the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA).


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According to a version of the draft letter [PDF 512 KB]—obtained informally and thus is not official and must not be relied upon—key observations relating to the trade of goods, among more than 40 goals outlined, include:

  • Reducing non-tariff barriers and broadening market access for U.S. textile, apparel, and agricultural exports
  • “Leveling the playing field” on tax treatment
  • Modifying rules of origin for preferential tariff treatment
  • Improving trade facilitation and enforcement between customs authorities
  • Establishing rules concerning government procurement consistent with U.S. “Buy American” policies and laws
  • Seeking safeguard measures to allow temporary revocation of tariff preferences if imports cause serious injury to domestic industry
  • Eliminating Chapter 19 dispute settlement mechanism of antidumping and countervailing duty determinations

KPMG observation

Trade professionals have noted that in the unofficial draft version of the letter, the administration says it would seek, through the negotiations, to “improve competitive opportunities for exports of US goods” and that the administration would be seeking “rules of origin that ensure that the Agreement supports production and jobs in the United States” as well as “provisions to address circumvention that ensure that preferential duty rates under the agreement apply only to goods eligible to receive such treatment.” Some view this draft letter as demonstrating that the administration would focus on enforcement in the negotiations.  


For more information, contact a professional with KPMG’s Trade & Customs practice:

Douglas Zuvich | +1 (312) 665-1022 |

Andrew Siciliano | +1 (631) 425-6057 |

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