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Automakers Launch Coalition to Save NAFTA

grinding-2755562_960_720With the future of North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) in jeopardy, some of the world’s biggest automakers have formed a coalition in an attempt to save the agreement.

Originally enacted January 1, 1994, NAFTA is wide-reaching trade agreement between Canada, Mexico and the United States. It took over the previous Canada-United States Free Trade Agreement while subsequently including Mexico in the deal. Like all trade agreements, NAFTA has its pros and cons. However, the majority of economic analysts will agree that NAFTA is beneficial to the average American citizen as well as the U.S. economy. Granted, it’s damaged a small number of workers in certain industries due to increased competition, but the benefits typically outweigh the cons. For these reasons and others, countless organizations are pushing to keep NAFTA alive.

According to an article published by Reuters, automakers, dealers and auto parts suppliers are forming a coalition to convince U.S. lawmakers not to pull out of NAFTA. Some of the automakers participating in this coalition include General Motors, Toyota Motors, Volkswagen, Hyundai Motor Co, Ford Motor Co and others. The coalition, dubbed “Driving American Job,” is expected to launch an advertising campaign to sway the public’s opinion in favor of NAFTA.

In addition to an advertising campaign, the coalition has also launched a new website at DrivingAmericanJobs.com, which will educate the public and lawmakers alike regarding the benefits of NAFTA for the American workforce. Whether or not the coalition will prove successful in its attempt to keep NAFTA alive remains to be seen. With that said, there’s certainly a strong push for keeping NAFTA.

According to a Gallup poll, the American public is pretty much split between whether or not to keep NAFTA. 46% of Americans believe NAFTA is bad for the country, while 48% believe it’s good for the country.

There’s good news, however: a recent statement released by the Office of the United States Trade Representative says the three countries are working to improve NAFTA and resolve their differences. This isn’t a definitive statement that NAFTA will survive, though it certainly looks promising.

Building on the progress made in prior rounds, the United States, Canada, and Mexico have now substantively completed discussions in the Chapter on Competition,” the statement reads. “Additionally, negotiators made progress in several other negotiating groups, including customs and trade facilitation, digital trade, good regulatory practices, and certain sectoral annexes.”

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