National Newswatch

NAFTA 2.0 – Deathwatch: Counting the days

Nov 18 2017 — Peter Clark — MEXICO CITY – Ambassador Robert Lighthizer added some spice to an otherwise boring Day 1 of Round Five by filing an updated report to Congress on the Administration’s negotiating objectives for NAFTA 2.0. There is not much change from the July 17, 2017 report which we analyzed here. The negotiations on Procurement and Automotive Rules […]

NAFTA 2.0 – Deathwatch: Counting the days

Nov 18 2017 — Peter Clark — MEXICO CITY – Ambassador Robert Lighthizer added some spice to an otherwise boring Day 1 of Round Five by filing an updated report to Congress on the Administration’s negotiating objectives for NAFTA 2.0. There is not much change from the July 17, 2017 report which we analyzed here. The negotiations on Procurement and Automotive Rules of Origin […]

NAFTA 2.0 – Don’t Drink the Kool Aid

Nov 2 2017 — Peter Clark — The NAFTA 2.0 re-negotiations are like meat in a shark tank. The doomsayers are flocking to print, TV studios and to their pulpits. But recent developments should not be surprising. The U.S. NAFTA re-balancing effort was in trouble from Day One. On January 23, 2017, I wrote: “We must hope for the best and prepare […]

NAFTA 2.0 – Don’t Drink the Kool Aid

Nov 2 2017 — Peter Clark — The NAFTA 2.0 re-negotiations are like meat in a shark tank. The doomsayers are flocking to print, TV studios and to their pulpits. But recent developments should not be surprising. The U.S. NAFTA re-balancing effort was in trouble from Day One. On January 23, 2017, I wrote: “We must hope for the best and prepare for […]

NAFTA 2.0 – Frontal attack on Canadian and Mexican Sovereignty

Oct 16 2017 — Peter Clark — Civil Society is fond of grumbling about trade negotiations infringing on national sovereignty. Until NAFTA 2.0 they have been wrong. Total rebalancing of NAFTA to benefit the U.S. makes their concerns very real. The key U.S. demands are a frontal attack on Canadian and Mexican sovereignty. The pace of meetings has slowed down. The two meeting […]

NAFTA 2.0 – Opening Pandora’s Box

Oct 13 2017 — Peter Clark — PENTAGON CITY, VA – Friday the thirteenth has been a bad day for Canadian trade negotiators. POTUS is on a roll – the builder of magnificent (if garish) buildings should never be allowed to play with the wrecking ball or the explosives. In the last few days he has: pulled the U.S. out of the […]

NAFTA 2.0 – Are its days numbered?

Oct 12 2017 — Peter Clark — PENTAGON CITY, VA – The Trump Administration is taking the gloves off. Were they ever on? President Trump told Fortune that a breakdown and pulling the plug was necessary to fix NAFTA. I was taught that trade negotiations were exercises in good faith. This rule does not apply in the world according to President Trump. […]

Bombardier Blitzed

Sep 27 2017 — Peter Clark — The NAFTA 2.0 negotiators are dealing with trade remedies this week. These disciplines on trade are more commonly known as safeguards, anti-dumping and countervailing duties. The first shoe has dropped in the Boeing–Bombardier trade remedies saga focusing real-time attention on the trade remedies warriors and reinforcing the importance to Canada of maintaining access to judicial review […]

NAFTA 2.0 – A Glimpse of the Detail

Sep 25 2017 — Peter Clark — Day 2, Sunday – was a beautiful sunny day for the NAFTA re-negotiators. Not much happening so far. Indeed, little can happen before Ministers arrive to give their blessing to the “warp speed” efforts of the professionals labouring on the floor above us. The press corps is anxiously hoping for nuggets from the smiling, tight-lipped […]

NAFTA 2.0 – From the Halls of Montezuma

Sep 4 2017 — Peter Clark — This week’s round of NAFTA renegotiation talks is occurring in Mexico City’s Grand Hyatt close by the Chapultepec Park, the site of the Famous Battle of the U.S. Marine hymn – the Halls of Montezuma. Notwithstanding the rumours, the battles inside the Hyatt have not reached military scale – or even fisticuffs. Any real news […]

Not what the Donald ordered

Aug 17 2017 — Peter Clark — I’m off to Washington for round one of the NAFTA 2.0 negotiations. There may be some minimal harvesting of low-hanging fruit this week. President Trump wants more, of course. He needs something to distract from the daily disintegration of his administration. NAFTA must be demolished and rebuilt to his design — or perhaps just scrapped […]