Agreement Signed In 1993 To Reduce Tariffs
In a 60-minute interview in September 2015, presidential candidate Donald Trump described NAFTA as “the worst trade deal ever approved in the United States” and said that if elected, “he would either renegotiate or we would break it.”   Juan Pablo Castaen [es], chairman of the trade group Consejo Coordinador Empresarial, expressed concern about the renegotiations and the desire to focus on the automotive industry.  A number of trade experts have stated that abandoning NAFTA would have a number of unintended consequences for the United States, including limited access to its key export markets, lower economic growth and higher prices for gasoline, cars, fruits and vegetables.  Members of the Mexican private initiative noted that many laws needed to be adapted by the U.S. Congress to eliminate NAFTA. Finally, this would give rise to complaints from the World Trade Organization.  The Washington Post found that a review of academic literature by the Congress Research Service concluded that “the overall net effect of NAFTA on the U.S. economy appears to be relatively modest, mainly because trade with Canada and Mexico accounts for a small percentage of U.S. GDP.”  Agriculture has been essentially excluded from previous agreements, as it has been granted special status in the areas of import quotas and export subsidies, with few reserves. However, at the time of the Uruguay Round, many countries considered the agricultural exception so egregious that they refused to sign a new no-move agreement for agricultural products.
These fourteen countries were known as the “Cairns Group” and consisted mainly of small and medium-sized agricultural exporters such as Australia, Brazil, Canada, Indonesia and New Zealand. Some trade experts and economists welcome NAFTA and other free trade agreements (FTCs) for expanding trade and economic relations between countries, creating more efficient production processes, increasing the availability of cheaper consumer goods, and improving living standards and working conditions. Others blame free trade agreements for disappointing employment trends, a decline in the United States.