Fourth NAFTA round launches with disagreements

The sunset provision, textile industry, and Government procurement are some of the controversial issues discussed so far
The fourth NAFTA round began on October 11 - File photo/EL UNIVERSAL
12/10/2017
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The fourth round of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) talks has launched with disagreements over the textile industry and Government procurement, and the official proposal of the U.S. to include a sunset provision.

After the United States proposed during the third round to eliminate or modify the rules which allow the Mexican textile industry to use materials not manufactured within the region, the Mexican Government presented yesterday their official rejection of this petition.

The president of the Mexican Chamber of the Textile Industry, José Cohen, said the restrictions on using overseas material will eliminate Mexico from the competition and will cause an import increase of Asian textiles in the U.S.

Regarding Government procurement, the Mexican representatives have also qualified as unacceptable the “dollar for dollar” scheme proposed, that is, to have a reciprocal number of contracts.

Meanwhile, today, the U.S. negotiators have officially brought to the table the five-year sunset provision for NAFTA, which seeks to terminate the agreement between the parties unless they all convene to renew it.

“The Agreement would end, except for the partners expressing their interest in continuing,” said an official, who has asked to remain anonymous.

And these aren't the only controversial topics which will be discussed during this round, scheduled to conclude on October 17.

The labor and energetic topics are set to be discussed tomorrow, October 13, while an entire day has been designated to talk about the dispute-resolution mechanism.

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