Steel News

USMCA Clears Canadian Parliament, U.S. Targets June Implementation

3/18/2020 - Canada’s parliament has ratified the U.S.-Mexico-Canada agreement, officially bringing all of North America into the replacement NAFTA deal. 

Canada was the last of the three countries to ratify the agreement. 

“Now that the USMCA has been approved by all three countries, an historic new chapter for North American trade has begun. This landmark achievement would not be possible without President Trump’s leadership and determination to strengthen our economy, and the hard work of our negotiating partners in Canada and Mexico,” said United States Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer. 

“USMCA is the gold standard by which all future trade agreements will be judged, and citizens of all three countries will benefit for years to come,” he added. 

The American Iron and Steel Institute also applauded the ratification. 

“We believe that USMCA will in fact strengthen manufacturing supply chains with the automotive, auto parts, pipe and tube, and others as it enhances the rules of origin for steel-intensive goods, which incentivizes the use of North American steel in these industries,” the institute said in a statement to AIST Steel News. 

“In addition, USMCA promotes increased cooperation and information sharing among the North American government to address circumvention and evasion of trade remedy orders.  This will enhance the ability of our three countries to continue to work together to address the surges of dumped and subsidized steel imports that have plagued the North American steel market, caused primarily by excess global steel overcapacity in China and elsewhere.”  

With the agreement ratified, the next step will be to implement it. The Trump administration is targeting a 1 June effective date, but some lawmakers have expressed concerns that the date isn’t feasible, especially as the country deals with the spread of the coronavirus and resulting supply chain disruptions. 

"It would be prudent right now to let these companies focus instead on the health of their workforce and supply chains," U.S. Senate Finance Committee Chairman Charles Grassley said.