Bill Kelly: Welcome to NAFTA — the sequel

Click to play video: 'Canada, U.S. reach new NAFTA deal with a new name'
Canada, U.S. reach new NAFTA deal with a new name
Canada and the U.S. have reached a new NAFTA deal which will be now called the United States, Mexico, Canada agreement. Mercedes Stephenson reports – Oct 1, 2018

With the clock ticking down to a midnight deadline, Canada, the United States and Mexico reached a new trade deal that replaces NAFTA, and on the surface, it looks pretty good from this side of the border.

The new deal will be called the USMCA deal, basically, because Donald Trump didn’t like the sound of the acronym NAFTA, which offers some insight into just how petty negotiations can get, but such is the reality when dealing with Trump.

As with all deals, there’s some give and take, but it seems that Canada was able to protect a lot of what it held dear from the old NAFTA agreement.

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The dispute resolution process that the Americans wanted to scrap will remain in place and the controversial supply management support system for the Canadian dairy industry remains, although there will be an increase in the amount of American dairy products allowed over the border tariff-free.

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And speaking of tariffs, it appears that the pact includes a guarantee against U.S.-imposed tariffs in the auto sector, and that’s certainly good news, but there was no agreement to lift the Trump-imposed tariffs on steel and aluminum and that’s bad news for the local Hamilton economy.

There’ll be much more analysis and dissection of the deal in days to come, but the big takeaway is that Canada was able to preserve a trade deal that the American president continually threatened to tear up, and from that standpoint, it’s mission accomplished.

Bill Kelly is the host of the Bill Kelly Show on Global News Radio 900 CHML

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