USMCA signing (The Canadian Press)

Lighthizer celebrates USMCA, promises enforcement as trade deal comes into force

U.S. trade ambassador Robert Lighthizer promises to ensure that USMCA’s rules and obligations are enforced

The new North American trade agreement is officially the law of the land, and the Trump administration is vowing to ensure that Canada, Mexico and the United States live up to its obligations.

U.S. trade ambassador Robert Lighthizer has issued a statement marking today’s coming into force of the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement, and promises to ensure that its rules and obligations are enforced.

In it, he cheers the USMCA as the signature accomplishment of President Donald Trump and a “monumental change” that will benefit American workers, farmers and ranchers instead of multinational corporations.

Kirsten Hillman, Canada’s ambassador to the U.S. and a central player in the negotiations, says the agreement — known as CUSMA in Canada — is designed to ensure more people in all three countries can reap its benefits.

That was the enduring flaw within the previous NAFTA agreement, which has been derided for years in the U.S. as a principal reason why manufacturing jobs migrated to Mexico.

The new deal has more stringent labour provisions that require more products to be built with well-paid labour in order to qualify for duty-free treatment.

“A huge component of this was incentivizing North American manufacturing in the auto sector. And that was about putting our workers on a level playing field with North American competitors,” Hillman said in an interview.

“As a high-wage jurisdiction, we want to make sure our folks were on a level playing field. So I think the theme of it is trade for all Canadians.”

The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Want to support local journalism? Make a donation here.

USMCA

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Morning Start: High heels were first designed for men

Your morning start for Monday, Aug. 10, 2020

QUIZ: Do you know the truth?

In what has been described as a post-truth era, how much do you know about truth and lies?

EDITORIAL: Managing wildfires

Wildfires have the potential to cause significant damage within our province

Opening night lineup for online Roots & Blues festival released

The first night of the festival on Aug. 14 will be stacked with favourites from previous years

July Kootenay real estate sales at record high

Sales and prices of Kootenay real estate on the rise

Canada to match donations to Lebanon relief

Canada is directing all of its aid for this crisis directly to humanitarian organizations, not the Lebanese government

Class resumption raises challenges for Central Okanagan schools

Education ministry directive to resume K-12 classes Sept. 8 creating many questions

Bear put down after being found on Vancouver Island kitchen counter

Bear trapped and killed near Ucluelet after repeated instances of entering sheds and homes

‘We’re glad you’re here’: Positive note left on Alberta car at Kelowna beach

‘Our hearts are full, and this restores all sorts of faith in humanity’

Kelowna RCMP search for missing teen

Reina Hodgins was last seen Aug. 9, 2020 at 12:30 p.m. at her residence

Who can dismiss the Governor General? A look at protocols and possibilities

The Governor General is appointed by the Queen, on the advice of the prime minister

Second phase of NHL draft lottery set for Monday

Each club eliminated from qualifying round has a 12.5 per cent shot at the No. 1 pick

University of Victoria, rowing coach sued over alleged ‘fat shaming’ and verbal abuse

Lawsuit says Barney Williams subjected coxswain Lily Copeland to offensive and belittling language

1 year since a B.C. teen died in a skate park, his family still waiting for charges

Carson Crimeni’s final moments were broadcast on social media

Most Read