NAFTA Works for America


Now is the time to modernize the North American Free Trade Agreement

Trade with Canada and Mexico is a significant driver of U.S. economic growth, and with a two-decade record to examine, it’s plain to see that the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) has generated substantial new opportunities for U.S. workers, farmers, consumers, and businesses.

More than 125,000 small and medium-size businesses export to our two North American neighbors, and they are our largest export markets by far. Most important, trade with Canada and Mexico supports 14 million American jobs.

The business community welcomes the opportunity to update the agreement, and as NAFTA negotiations are underway, the U.S. Chamber understands that now is the time to modernize NAFTA.

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14 M

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American jobs supported by trade with Canada and Mexico

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350%

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increase in agricultural exports since NAFTA enactment

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125,000

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small-and medium-size businesses sell goods and services to Canada and Mexico

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$79 B

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cumulative trade surplus in manufactured goods with Canada and Mexico, 2008-2014

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NAFTA Works for US

 

Myths and Facts about NAFTA

 

Myth:

NAFTA sent U.S. factory jobs abroad with a “giant sucking sound.”
 

Fact:

It never happened.

U.S. manufacturers added more than 800,000 jobs in the four years after NAFTA entered into force, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. This boom in factory jobs came after a period before NAFTA entered into force (1980–1993) when the United States lost nearly 2 million manufacturing jobs. Canada and Mexico are the top two destinations for U.S. manufactured goods exports, which all told support more than half of America’s 12.3 million factory jobs.


Myth:

NAFTA added to the U.S. trade deficit.
 

Fact:

With regard to Canada and Mexico, the United States ran a cumulative trade surplus in manufactured goods of more than $79 billion over the past seven years (2008-2014).

For services, the U.S. surplus was $41.8 billion in 2014 alone. The fact that substantial U.S. petroleum imports from Canada and Mexico contribute to the overall U.S. trade deficit stems from geology—not NAFTA.


Myth:

NAFTA has contributed to unemployment.
 

Fact:

The U.S. unemployment rate was markedly lower in the years immediately after NAFTA came into force (it averaged 5.1% in 1994–2007) than in the period immediately before (it averaged 7.1% in 1982–1993).

Trade with Canada and Mexico supports nearly 14 million U.S. jobs, and nearly 5 million of these jobs are supported by the increase in trade generated by NAFTA, according to a comprehensive economic study commissioned by the U.S. Chamber. 

Facts on NAFTA cover

 

 

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Recent Activity

Above the FoldOct 08, 2018 - 9:00am
United States, Canada, and Mexico flags

A New NAFTA

After 13 months of talks, and a whole lot of ups and downs, the U.S., Mexico, and Canada have reached agreement on a successor to the 25-year-old North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). The aim of the new United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) is to bring North American trade policy into the 21st century.

LetterSep 18, 2018 - 11:30am

Joint Letter on NAFTA

Above the FoldJul 31, 2018 - 12:00pm
Canadian, American and Mexican flags stand on stage ahead of the first round of North American Free Trade Agreement negotiations in Washington, D.C.

Trade Rumors (NAFTA Edition)

Trade rumors always swirl in late July. This year, the usual Major League Baseball scuttlebutt is mixed with rumors about a surge of momentum toward a new North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA).

Some of these reports will be borne out, but others are indeed just rumors. Let’s take some of the chief rumors head on:

“A breakthrough is imminent”

Maybe.

Above the FoldMar 21, 2018 - 9:00am
Wilbur Ross, U.S. commerce secretary, right, and Robert Lighthizer, U.S. trade representative.

Question Time on Trade

U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer will appear before the House Committee on Ways and Means and the Senate Committee on Finance on Wednesday and Thursday, respectively (watch here and here at 10 a.m. each day).

Above the FoldFeb 13, 2018 - 12:00pm
Canadian, American and Mexican flags stand on stage ahead of the first round of North American Free Trade Agreement negotiations in Washington, D.C.

The Case for a 'Fully Enforceable' NAFTA

When it comes to trade agreements, most Americans like them “strong and enforceable.” As the U.S. Chamber of Commerce has often said, the commitments in a trade pact aren’t worth the paper they’re written on if they can’t be enforced.

America's small businesses support NAFTA
 

Meet the faces of Trade

Stay up to date on NAFTA negotiations
 

North American Economic Alliance