Full Speech: President Trump Touts New NAFTA Deal With Mexico And Canada

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President Donald Trump and U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer deliver remarks about the updates to the 1990s-era North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) deal that Mexico and Canada agreed to over the weekend.

Related Story: POLITICO: How a Democratic Congress could derail Trump’s NAFTA dreams

Transcript:





TRUMP: Thank you. Thank you very much. Please, sit down.

It's really great to see everybody on this beautiful, beautiful day in Washington, D.C. Some people say "the swamp," but I will not say that today.

(LAUGHTER)

I refuse. This is too -- too important, what we're doing, one of the most important deals, and the most important trade deal we've ever made, by far.TRUMP: I want to thank Senator Joni Ernst for being here.

Joni, thank you very much.

(APPLAUSE)

Of Iowa. And I'll be there very soon. We'll be doing something very important in Iowa. But this is maybe more important than all of it put together, right, Joni? So I want to thank you for being here.

Congressman Holding, Congressman Roe, Congressman Newhouse and Congressman Meadows, thank you all for being here. We very much appreciate it. You've been very instrumental. Thank you.

(APPLAUSE)

I am thrilled to speak to the American people to share truly historic news for our nation, and indeed for the world.

I want to thank Vice President Pence for joining us this morning.

It's my great honor to announce that we have successfully completed negotiations on a brand new deal to terminate and replace NAFTA and the NAFTA trade agreement with an incredible new U.S.-Mexico-Canada agreement called USMCA.

It sort of just works, MCA.(APPLAUSE)

TRUMP: USMCA. And that'll be the name I guess that 99 percent of the time we'll be hearing, USMCA. Has a good ring to it.

I have long contended that NAFTA was perhaps the worst trade deal ever made.

Since NAFTA's adoption, the United States racked up trade deficits totaling more than $2 trillion, and it's a much higher number than that. With Canada and Mexico it lost vast amounts of money and lost 4.1 million manufacturing jobs and one in four auto jobs -- lost about 25 percent of our auto jobs -- even more than that.

Throughout the campaign I promised to renegotiate NAFTA and today we have kept that promise. But for 25 years as a civilian, as a businessman, I used to say, "How could anybody have signed a deal like NAFTA?"

And I watched New England and so many other places where I was -- just the factories were leaving, the jobs were leaving, people were being fired. And we can't have that.

So we have negotiated this new agreement based on the principle of fairness and reciprocity. To me, it's the most important word in trade, because we've been treated so unfairly by so many nations all over the world that we're changing that.

Just signed a much better deal with South Korea. We had a horrible, horrible deal and we just signed that at the United Nations. And that's worked out well, and they're happy, we're happy. It's good for jobs, good for a lot of things.

When that deal was signed, they said 250,000 jobs will be given by signing this transaction and they were right. I've said it before, they were right: 250,000 jobs to South Korea, not to the United States.

So that's changed and very much for the better and this one is a brand new deal. The agreement will govern nearly $1.2 trillion in trade, which makes it the biggest trade deal in the United State's history.

I want to congratulate U.S. Trade Representative Bob Lighthizer, who has worked -- nobody understands how hard he's worked.

(APPLAUSE)

No matter when you called him, he was in the office or he was in somebody else's office doing the same thing. Bob Lighthizer's great. I've heard it for years. I said, "If I ever do this, I want to get Lighthizer to represent us," because he felt the way I did.TRUMP: And the entire team at the USTR standing behind me and some right here in the audience, I want to thank you all.

(APPLAUSE)

Fantastic job. Peter Navarro, everybody. Thank you all. Thank you. Fantastic group of people. They love our country.

I also want to thank Secretary Mnuchin, Secretary Ross, Secretary Nielsen, Secretary Perdue, Jared Kushner, Peter Navarro and the United States ambassador to Canada, Kelly Craft. Thank you. Thank you, Kelly. Thank you very much.

(APPLAUSE)

I also want to thank President Pena Nieto of Mexico, who -- we had a few disagreements, but I really like him a lot. I think he may like me. I'm not sure.

(LAUGHTER)

But I think he's a terrific person. And he'll be leaving soon, but he's really done a good job, and wonderful, wonderful person.

And the Mexican president-elect, Lopez Obrador, who has given his support to this agreement, and we're developing a really good relationship, which I think is very important for our country, frankly, and for Mexico. And so they worked together on this. This was done by both. I said, "Look, I don't want to sign an agreement, and then a new president comes in, they don't like it, and we have difficulty." They worked very much together on it, and I appreciate it from both.

I have to certainly give my highest regards to Prime Minister of Canada Justin Trudeau. A lot of stories came out about Justin and I having difficulty together, and we did, over the trade deal. But I'll tell you, it's turned out to be a very, very good deal for both, and a very, very good deal for all three. It puts us in a position that we've never been in before. It's very good when you look at the world and what the world is doing, and what -- when you look at the unfair trade practices that countries are using against the United States. This is a terrific deal for all of us.

Once approved by Congress, this new deal will be the most modern, up-to-date and balanced trade agreement in the history of our country, with the most advanced protections for workers ever developed. If you look at the reviews, people that would normally not, under any circumstances, say good things, because automatically, they have to say bad -- even some Democrats say, "That's amazing." We had some -- they're -- they haven't been given the soundbites yet, I guess, Mike. But actually, you had some Democrats say, "This is really amazing, if he really got all of that."

But by tomorrow, I would suspect they'll change their tune, but that's OK, because people know how good it is. It's an amazing deal for a lot of people.

Likewise, it will be the most advanced trade deal in the world, with ambitious provisions on the digital economy, patents -- very important -- financial services and other areas where the United States has a strong competitive advantage.

Mexico and Canada have agreed to strong new labor protections, environmental protections and new protections for intellectual property. So important.

This new deal is an especially great victory for our farmers. Our farmers have gone through a lot over the last 15 years. They've been taken advantage of by everybody. Prices have gone way down. And we're working on some other deals that are going to make them very happy, also. But this a very, very big deal for our farmers. Mexico and Canada will be opened up a lot more than they are now, and I think there'll be a better spirit between the three countries, which is important for our farmers.TRUMP: The agreement will give our farmers and ranchers far greater access to sell American-grown produce in Mexico and in Canada. The deal includes a substantial increase in our farmers' opportunities to export American wheat, poultry, eggs and dairy, including milk, butter, cheese, yogurt and ice cream, to name a few. I want to be very specific.

(APPLAUSE)

I want to be very specific. Right?

And many other products, but those products were not really being treated fairly, as far as those that work so hard to produce them, and now they're going to be treated fairly.

These measures will support many hundreds of thousands of American jobs.

This is also a historic win for American manufacturers and American autoworkers, who have been treated so badly. We've lost so many jobs over the years under NAFTA.

Under the current new deal -- and if you look at the current NAFTA deal -- the new deal is taking care of all of these problems, because NAFTA, foreign companies have been allowed to manufacture many of their parts overseas, ship them to Mexico and Canada for assembling, and send their foreign-made cars into the United States with no tax.

So, we let all our people go, we fire everybody, they make cars, they make products, they make everything in another country, they send them into the United States, no tax. And the cost is very little difference, sometimes it's more. for those people that like to talk about cost.

With this agreement, we are closing all of these terrible loopholes. They're closed. They're gone. They were a disaster.

For example, we are requiring a large portion of every car to be made by high-wage workers, which will greatly reduce foreign outsourcing, which was a tremendous problem, and means more auto parts and automobiles will be manufactured inside the United States. We will be manufacturing many more cars.

And our companies won't be leaving the United States, firing their workers and building their cars elsewhere. There's no longer that incentive. Before, under the NAFTA deal, they had that incentive. They have the opposite incentive now. We're not going to be losing our companies.

That was, to me, the most important thing. I don't want to see our companies leave and fire our workers, and our workers never get jobs to replace those jobs. Those days are over.

This deal will also impose new standards requiring at least 75 percent of every automobile to be made in North America in order to qualify for the privilege of free access to our markets. And that's what it is, it's a privilege. We don't take it as a privilege. We don't take it as a privilege. It's a privilege for them to do business with us.

And I am not talking about Mexico. I'm talking about everybody -- everybody. It's a privilege for China to do business with us. It's a privilege for the European Union, who has treated us very badly, but that's coming along, to do business with us. Japan, every country, it's a privilege for them to come in and attack the piggy bank.

In this, we will have a result of much more happening right here in the United States. It means, more than anything else, far more American jobs. And these are high-quality jobs.

There are also strong provisions to enforce what's called the rules of origin requirements. This will incentivize billions of dollars in new purchases of U.S.-made automobiles.TRUMP: Once approved, this will be a new dawn for the American auto industry and for the American autoworker. They will see. They understand. They voted for us in large numbers, even though their leadership always goes Democrat. Couple of them said to me, "I don't know how I can do it again."

Many of them, the leaders would back Democrats and would tell me, "You're going to get most of the votes from union workers." And we got most of the votes from workers, period.

But the American autoworker was very much behind what we were doing.

As one primary aspect, it will transform North America back into a manufacturing powerhouse. If you remember the previous administration said we're not going to have manufacturing jobs anymore, essentially. We're not going to have -- we're not going to make things anymore?

No, just the opposite. Going to be a manufacturing powerhouse and allow us to reclaim a supply chain that has been offshored to the world because of unfair trade issues.

We also provide brand-new intellectual property protections for biologic drugs, which will make North America a haven for medical innovation and development. We want our drugs to be made here. When you talk prescription drugs, we don't like getting them from foreign countries. We don't know what's happening with those drugs, how they're being made. Too important.

This landmark agreement will send cash and jobs pouring into the United States and into North American. Good for Canada, good for Mexico. Instead of jobs leaving for overseas, they will be returning back home.

And we've already had it. We have many, many car companies -- I was with Prime Minister Abe of Japan. He said, "We have sent many car companies to the United States over the last year and a half." It's true, had big expansions. And very importantly, he said, "Many more are coming," because they have an incentive now to be here.

People want to be back in the United States again. As I say, the United States is respected again. But it's also respected as to trade and industry.

This is a truly extraordinary agreement for the United States, Canada and Mexico.

President Pena Nieto -- it's so important that the president and I have developed this sort of a bond. A bond on trade.

Pena Nieto, a man that has done a very good job for Mexico in terms of trade, and Prime Minister Trudeau, who I just spoke to; just spoke to both of them a little while ago, they love their countries. They want to do right for the countries, and that's what they've done.

And we've really formed -- if you look at this agreement, we formed a great partnership with Mexico and with Canada.

And I plan to sign the agreement by the end of November. I then will submit it for approval to Congress, where, in theory, there should be no trouble, but anything you submit to Congress is trouble, no matter what.

It's the single greatest agreement ever signed, they'll say, "Well, you know, Trump likes it, therefore we're not going to approve it because that would be good for the Republicans, so therefore we can't approve it."

But it will be sent to Congress pursuant to the Trade Promotion Authority Act.

This agreement follows on the heels of our successful completion of a new and balanced trade deal with South Korea. Tremendous difference in that deal from what it was -- it was a disaster, as I said -- to improve the old deal that had killed so many jobs.

It also follows on our announcement last week of a new trade negotiation with Japan. Japan would never negotiate with the United States. They say, "We're not going to negotiate." They told the previous administration, "We're not going to negotiate." I said, "You don't have to negotiate, but we're going to put a very, very substantial tax on your car if you don't."TRUMP: By way, without tariffs we wouldn't be talking about a deal. Just for those babies out there that keep talking about tariffs. That includes Congress. "Oh please, don't charge tariffs." Without tariffs, you wouldn't be -- we wouldn't be standing here. I can tell you, Bob and all of these folks would not be standing here right now.

And we're totally prepared to do that if they don't negotiate. But Japan is wanting to negotiate. Actually, they called about three weeks ago. And he's a terrific man, a terrific -- just had a tremendous victory. And they said, "We'd like to start negotiations immediately."

India, which is the tariff king, they called us and they say, "We want to start negotiations immediately." When Bob Lighthizer said, "What happened? He would never do this." They said, "No, we want to keep your president happy." Isn't that nice? Isn't that nice? It's true. They have to keep us happy, because they understand that we're wise to what's been happening.

India charges tariffs of 100 percent, and then if we want to put a tariff of 25 percent on, people will call from Congress, "But that's not free trade." And I'd look back to people and say, "Where do these people come from? Where do they come from?"

So because of the power of tariffs and the power that we have with tariffs, we, in many cases, won't even have to use them. That's how powerful they are, and how good they are. But in many cases, we're not going to have to use them.

And many -- and in many cases, countries that are charging massive tariffs are eliminating those tariffs. As you know, we have $250 billion at 25 percent interest with China right now, and we could go $267 billion more, and China wants to talk very badly. And I said, "Frankly, it's too early to talk." Can't talk now, because they're not ready, because they've been ripping us for so many years. It doesn't happen that quickly. And if politically, people force it too quickly, you're not going to make the right deal for our workers and for our country.

But China wants to talk, and we want to talk to them.

And we want them to help us with North Korea. We want them to continue to help us with North Korea. That's very important.

The European Union been very tough on the United States. Last year and for many years, they've lost in the vicinity of $150 billion a year. They have massive trade barriers. And they didn't want to come. They didn't want to talk.

Jean-Claude, great businessperson, head of the European Union, Jean-Claude, my friend, I'd say, "Jean-Claude, we want to make a deal." He goes, "No, no, no. We are very happy." I said, "You may be happy, but I'm not happy, because we have one of the worst deals of any group. We have one of the worst deals with the European Union." And they just didn't want to come because they were happy with the deal. I said, "But we're not happy with the deal."

And finally, after, you know, going through a whole process, I said, "Look, we're just going to put a tax of 20 percent on all of the millions of Mercedes and BMWs -- all of the cars." And millions and millions of cars that they sell here that they won't take over there; farm product that they won't take over there, because their barriers, you can't sell. You're not allowed to. Our farmers aren't allowed to sell over there, many of the products -- much of their products -- most of them.

And so I announced that we're going to put a 20 percent tariff, could be 25, on their cars coming in, and they immediately called and said, "We'd like to start negotiations." And we're having a successful negotiation. We'll see what happens. Who knows? I always say, who knows? But we'll see. I have a feeling we'll be successful.TRUMP: A pillar of national security is economic security and trade. National security is not where we lose hundreds of billions of dollars a year. Over the last five years, we've averaged $800 billion a year loss on trade. How dumb is that? $800 billion.

This group doesn't know about those numbers. I don't even want them to hear those numbers.

But the United States in its trade deals has lots on average almost $800 billion a year. That's dealing with China, dealing with European Union, dealing with everybody, Japan, Mexico, Canada, everybody. And we're not going to allow that to happen.

But we have to have a strong manufacturing base and manufacturing sector. We need a thriving economy. Those are all really essential ingredients to national security.

We can't allow what's been happening over the last 25 years to happen.

We're building our military like never before, it will be the strongest it ever was. And all of those jets that are made and rockets and missiles and ships, they're all being made in the United States. Jobs.

Our economy is booming like never before, jobless claims are at a 50-year low, the stock market is at a all-time high. Think of that. Over 50 percent since my election, 50 percent. People, the 401(k)s and they have 401(k)s and they were dying with them for years, now they're so happy.

I was telling the story I often tell of a policeman in New York came up, his wife was always very upset with him as an investor because he wasn't doing well with the 401(k)s. Now she thinks he's a genius because the numbers are so crazy.

But we're up over 50 percent since the election. And you've heard me say this many time, but African-American unemployment, Asian unemployment, Hispanic unemployment is at record lows in history; not, you know, for the last two years, the history of our country, African-American, Asian, Hispanic, young people without high school diplomas, all at historic -- that's a very important sector -- all at historic lows, the lowest in history, it's really something that's great.

This is helping so much with people that get out of prison. We have a tremendous problem. People come out of prison, they can't get a job, employers don't want to hire them. The economy is so good they're hiring them and they're turning out to be incredible workers. They're given a chance -- they're really given a second -- given a third chance in some cases.

But I've had numerous employers come up say, "I'll tell you what, I've taken people that were in prison and we've hired them" -- he wouldn't have done this in a normal economy or a bad economy, only in this kind of an economy.

And now he's like the biggest fan. One man in particular has taken numerous people. He said most of them have been unbelievable. All you can ask is most. But most of them have been unbelievable.

That's a great thing. That's a really great thing. It gives them a chance.

So before we take questions, I want to extend our warmest condolences to the country of Indonesia. Friend of mine, we're going to be calling up the leader, who is a great leader indeed. They got hit by a giant tsunami like people have not seen -- this part of the world hasn't seen it so much fortunately.

They say that's the worst of all, you look at the tornadoes, the hurricanes, you look at all of the different natural disasters -- friend of mine who studies natural disasters, I don't know why he does that, but he does -- he says that tsunami is the worst of all.


You can also read here a backgrounder from a "senior administration official" and Emily Davis, with the USTR Public and Media Affairs Office, delivered to members of the press on the phone Monday morning:

MS. DAVIS: Thank you, moderator. Good evening everyone. I'm Emily Davis, with the USTR Public and Media Affairs Office. Thank you for joining today's briefing call regarding trade.

This call is on background only. It is not on the record, so the contents of this call may be paraphrased or quoted with attribution to senior administration officials. Additionally, the contents of the call are embargoed until the conclusion of the call.

Here to provide the background briefing and answer questions are [senior administration officials]. So with this introduction, I'll first turn it over to my colleagues for opening remarks.

SENIOR ADMINISTRATION OFFICIAL: Well, good evening everyone. I am pleased to announce that the United States, Mexico, and Canada have agreed to text on a new agreement that will replace the North American Free Trade Agreement. This is a big win for the United States, for Mexico, and for Canada, and represents the fulfillment of one of the President's most important campaign promises.

The new agreement will include provisions in three areas that will become the template for the new Trump administration playbook for future trade deals. It includes a host of provisions that will rebalance our trade relationship with Mexico and Canada in ways that ultimately will be a benefit to all three countries; includes new and stronger rules of origin on automobiles, which will bring billions of dollars of production to the United States and throughout the region. It includes ambitious new market access provisions for our farmers and ranchers, including access to the Canadian dairy sector that is substantial and a big win for America's farmers.

We've also included the review and termination provision that we previously announced in our deal with Mexico, which will ensure that we never end up in this position again, with an agreement that is stale and outdated and unbalanced in a way that is not beneficial to the United States.

The second group of provisions are an ambitious host of new provisions that will strengthen trade in the modern economy; provisions on digital trade; groundbreaking intellectual properties that have never been in any trade agreement before; as well as a host of important disciplines and financial services in other areas which, to us, is always a competitive advantage.

The (inaudible) a host of new provisions to combat unfair trade practices in a number of areas -- currency manipulations; new disciplines on state-owned enterprises; as well as duty evasions, which will prevent free-riding from countries that do not trade with the U.S., Canada, and Mexico on free and open terms.

In short, we think that this is a fantastic agreement for the United States, but also for Canada and Mexico. It's a great win for the President and a validation of his strategy in the area of international trade.

SENIOR ADMINISTRATION OFFICIAL: And I -- this is [a senior administration official]. I just want to agree with everything my colleague said. The other point I want to make is, is that we think, from an OGC perspective, this is going to be one of the most important trade agreements we've ever had.

On the one hand, I think a lot of things that people need to appreciate about the review provision -- whereby the agreement comes up for review every six years -- this gives us a significant new form of leverage, in terms of encouraging people to come up to the mark and really fully comply with all of their obligations.

And I want to emphasize that this administration is committed to strong and effective enforcement of this agreement. Just like all of our other agreements, we will be watching very carefully to see and to make sure that all of the things that have been pledged and promised in the agreement do come about. And we will take all the actions that are available to us, both under this agreement and under U.S. law, if necessary, to make sure that that happens.

So these are not just going to be words on the paper. This is going to be real, and it's going to change people's lives, and it's going to make the U.S. economy stronger and better. And it's a great tribute to President Trump that we were able to get this type of commitment that my colleague was talking about. We are very, very, very excited about it over here, and we think it's going to be a great step forward for the whole North American region.

Q It's Jake Schlesinger, with the Wall Street Journal. Thank you for the call and for taking the questions. Quick questions. One, what is the name of the new trade agreement? Two, what is your timing, sort of, for submitting it to Congress? And third, what, if anything, did you do to deal with autos -- 232 concerns that Congress -- I mean, that Canada may have had?

SENIOR ADMINISTRATION OFFICIAL: Well, it is the -- the name of the agreement is the "USMCA" -- the "United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement."

In terms of timing, we will make the text public tonight, if it was not already done so. That is consistent with the Trade Promotion Authority, which will allow the President, Prime Minister Trudeau, and President Peña Nieto to sign the agreement at the end of November. It will then be submitted to Congress after that for action at this point in the next Congress after the first of the year.

Regarding the 232, as you know, there's an ongoing investigation at the Department of Commerce on 232. And no decision, no report has been issued. The President hasn't made the decision on that. This is an issue, however, that we've discussed with Mexico and Canada, and have reached an accommodation with them, particularly in light of the changes that are going to be made on the rules of origin that will ensure that anything that is done in the 232 space will at least ensure that we have an accommodation with Canada and Mexico as to their existing auto production.

Q Thanks for doing this. Two quick questions. One, I wanted to ask: Are there any changes to the TN visas, as regards to numbers or time limits? Also wanted to ask: A lot of farmers have been concerned about NAFTA, as well as, you know, tariffs in China. Is there any takeaway for those who have been concerned about some of these agreements and whether these agreements would come to fruition?

SENIOR ADMINISTRATION OFFICIAL: Well, I guess (inaudible) on the question of visas, we have retained existing NAFTA language on that, but not gone beyond it.

On the question of tariffs as they relate to agriculture -- and this is a great win for agriculture in a number of ways. We've secured greater market access, as I said, in particular, the Canadian dairy sector. We've also agreed on new rules on technical barriers to trade that will allow our farmers an easier time getting their goods to market in both Mexico and Canada.

We have a number of -- there are other things, obviously, going on in the trade world that relate to agriculture. And certain retaliatory tariffs that have been put in place on farmers -- we're working towards those issues.

And certainly the issues with China, as my colleague said, are longer-term, but this is a great step forward in our relationship with Mexico and Canada. As you know, last week, we announced the start of discussions with Japan. We have discussions going on with the European Union. So I think, overall, this is a trade strategy which is already yielding a lot of benefits to America's farmers, and we have a process in place to, you know, address their concerns about retaliatory tariffs and also to secure greater market access in the future.

Q Hi, this is Blake Burman with Fox Business. Thanks for doing this tonight. I was hoping that you could get a little bit more specific on dairy, considering that appeared to be the hang-up coming down the wire. What concessions were exactly made, or what kind of extra access are farmers here -- or that are people in that industry here going to be able to take advantage of because of it?

And secondly, as well, what is the relationship right now between President Trump and Prime Minister Trudeau, now that these negotiations have been wrapped up? Thank you.

SENIOR ADMINISTRATION OFFICIAL: Well, on the dairy issue, we have -- as I said, we've got a great result for our dairy farmers. (Inaudible) President's key objectives in these negotiations -- it's really two parts. One is, Canada has agreed to eliminate the Class 7 milk pricing system, which was something which was very problematic to many of our dairy farmers in Wisconsin, New York, and other places.

We've agreed, really, to a whole new regime that will prevent the supply-management systems effects from being externalized outside of Canada, which was something that was a key priority for our dairy industry.

And, in addition to that, we've achieved levels of market access that are -- for at least from the perspective of the United States -- a better deal than what the prior administration negotiated in TPP.

SENIOR ADMINISTRATION OFFICIAL: Yeah, and as far as just our relationship in general, I would just say that this is obviously a great moment -- this is a great moment in our relationship with all three countries. It's going to put our trade relationship, and hopefully our overall relationships on a better and stronger footing going into the future.

Q Hi there, Michael (Inaudible) at the Chronicle. I briefly just wanted to ask a brief question. So obviously, at the beginning of the call, it was said -- and I'm just trying to clarify -- that the call was off the record. But then the person stated that we were able to quote a senior White House official. Usually that would mean that it would be on background. So I just want to clarify, was it -- is it off the record, or is it on background?

MS. DAVIS: Thanks for the clarifying question. So the call is on background, which means that the contents are attributable to a senior administration official, either by quotation or by summary. It is not on the record; it is on background.

Q Hi, this is Ylan, from CNBC. I have two questions for you guys. Thanks for doing this. The first is, can you go through any changes to Chapter 11 and the investor-state dispute settlement, both with Mexico and with Canada?

And secondly, can you talk a little bit about President Trump and what his level of involvement was during the final stage of negotiations?



SENIOR ADMINISTRATION OFFICIAL: Let me just say this, with respect to your second question, obviously we're just going to refer you to the White House for the involvement of President Trump.

But with respect to Chapter 11, the ISDS, basically we're going to be phasing out Chapter 11 with respect to Canada. It will be phasing out --



SENIOR ADMINISTRATION OFFICIAL: Yeah, let me just say, so we were actually -- the investment protections in Chapter 11 are going to continue to be available. But the substantive investment protections are available to everyone.

There is a question of investor-state dispute settlement; that is going to be phased out with regard to Canada. The United States and Mexico have agreed to a reformed model for ISDS, which will mean that all investors will have a limited form of ISDS, and there will be a full -- there's a full fleet of ISDS procedures currently available that will continue to be available to investors in a limited set of industries that face high fixed costs, high degree of political sensitivity, and where ISDS really could -- the lack of ISDS could put our companies at a competitive disadvantage. And those are the oil and gas sector, transportation, infrastructure, and telecom.

Q Thank you. I have just one quick question. For those not versed in the nuance of policy, you had said that this new trade agreement will help the economy. Can you give us, in just a couple of sentences, some specific examples of how this will help the economy in the United States? Thank you.



SENIOR ADMINISTRATION OFFICIAL: Yeah, so I'll just start off on that. In the first place -- so, there's a number of examples: First of all, we're going to have stronger intellectual property provisions between all three countries which will encourage innovation and make it easier for U.S. companies to get the full benefit of the work that they do in the innovation areas.

Second of all, the new rules of origin, especially with respect to automobiles, will encourage more auto production and truck production here in the United States and throughout North America, and that should lead to better jobs here and around -- and throughout the region.

Third, we have new and stronger labor provisions, which will create a more level playing field between the U.S. and Mexico and Canada when it comes to labor issues, and therefore make it easier for our workers to be competitive and to have better, stronger, higher-wage jobs in the United States.

And then fourth, obviously there's been -- some people have been concerned about the future of NAFTA and the future of the North American Trade Agreement and whether or not that was going to continue. Now, obviously, (inaudible) of those concerns, they don't have to worry about that anymore.

So I think, on the whole, what you're going to have is a situation where the U.S. is now in a much stronger framework. It's a framework that encourages innovation, it encourages manufacturing, it encourages more and fair treatment for our workers, and it should lead to more investment and production in the United States.

And I'm glad you asked that question because people do need to understand that is why we do this -- the trade policy that we do. Everything we're doing here is designed to lead to higher incomes and higher wages and a higher standard of living for America. That's -- that is the point.

Q Hi, Will (Inaudible) at the Wall Street Journal. Thanks for doing this. Just wondering about the fate of Chapter 19 dispute settlement for countervailing and anti-dumping tariffs. And also, in terms of state-to-state dispute settlement, whether that will be fully binding for disputes among the countries on labor or other provisions. Thanks.



SENIOR ADMINISTRATION OFFICIAL: You know, Chapter 19 and Chapter 20 are both -- I mean, they may be -- I think they're going to be renumbered, but there hasn't been any significant changes with respect to those chapters.

And like I said before, we do intend to strongly enforce all of our rights under this agreement, both -- particularly with respect to labor. And we are going to be very aggressive in that regard.

Q Hi, thank you. Roberta Rampton with Reuters. I wanted to ask about aluminum and steel tariffs. And the Canadians have been very upset about them. Does the deal have any provisions or side letter, or deal with those in any respect? And just to follow up on the Chapter 19 question that you just answered, do you see this as a concession that the Chapter 19 is essentially staying the same?

SENIOR ADMINISTRATION OFFICIAL: Well, I guess I would say, with respect to the steel and aluminum, obviously that's a Commerce investigation. And ultimately, that's -- the short answer to your question is no, there's not any sort of agreement on that at this point. Obviously, there's been talk about potential discussions there, but that's on a completely separate track.

With regard to Chapter 19, in terms of whether or not we would regard it as a significant concession -- you know, obviously from our perspective, we think there's a lot of really, really great things in this agreement. And we're excited about those parts of it. And with respect to Chapter 19, we will continue to do everything we can under the -- to enforce our anti-dumping and countervailing duty laws as appropriate. And we do not think that Chapter 19 will prevent us from doing that.

Q Yeah. This is Adam Behsudi from Politico. Thanks for doing the call. So will there be a process then for discussing the steel and aluminum tariffs with Canada? And what's the timeline then for -- I mean for some sort of agreement on that?



SENIOR ADMINISTRATION OFFICIAL: That really is on a separate track. And that's not -- we're not really in the best position to comment on that.

Q Hi, Mercedes Stephenson with Global News in Canada. I'm wondering if you can talk about how big of a role the deadline played in coming to this agreement and how much pressure there was to try to get something done by midnight tonight?



SENIOR ADMINISTRATION OFFICIAL: Well, under TPA, as you know, we were supposed to post the text of the agreement tonight, and -- in order to have it signed by November the 30th. And so from our perspective, as I think the ambassador made clear many times, that was a very important date.

You know, I'm not really in a position to (inaudible), I'll defer to my colleague on whether or not he's in a position to say what effect it had on the negotiators.



SENIOR ADMINISTRATION OFFICIAL: Well, listen, I think it's helpful to have deadlines. But this was -- this deadline was real. It was something Ambassador Lighthizer was very clear about. And, you know, regardless of the role it played, we ended up in a good place that ultimately we think is a good deal for all three countries.

Q Hi, this is Heather Steele with AFP. Two questions: First of all, why the deadline pressure? Why did the deal have to be signed by December 1st? Is that something the U.S. wanted? It was more of a Mexican pressure because the current -- the outgoing government wanted the credit?

And also, on the -- this deal versus what would have happened in TPP, can you talk a little bit about -- you mentioned, with dairy, it was better. But are there any other things that were sort of adopted from TPP or improved or -- you know, or whatever?

SENIOR ADMINISTRATION OFFICIAL: Yeah, I guess I would just say briefly, we believe this deal has stronger labor provisions than TPP. We believe it has stronger IP provisions than TPP. We believe it has stronger environmental provisions than TPP. It has much stricter rules of origin with respect to automotive. It has a new review provision that wasn't in TPP. I mean, it really is a completely different -- in our opinion, much more innovative agreement.

In terms of, you know, who signs the deal, it was always our understanding that, from the prospective of Mexico, it was important that President Peña Nieto signed the deal on behalf of Mexico. And you sort of have to talk to the folks in Mexico about --

SENIOR ADMINISTRATION OFFICIAL: But I think if you just look -- and this is not just (inaudible). If you just look on sort of the objective facts, I mean, on -- you know, by and large, the marketing exclusivity period for biologic drugs -- in TPP, it was five years, with some protections for three additional years. Here it's going to be a flat 10, which is a great thing for our pharmaceutical innovators.

In the area of digital trade, we've achieved a much stronger, more ambitious commitment on data localization, cross-border data flows, as we well as intermediate liability. And the ag outcome is also better, particularly with regard to dairy.

Q Hi, good evening everyone. Thanks for doing this. Richard (Inaudible) here with Canadian Television. Hoping to circle back to dairy for a moment. In your opinion, would you consider that a deal breaker if Canada refused to open up its supply management system?

Second question, why the decision to sort of climb down from the cultural protection chapter that Canada was hoping to defend as well?

SENIOR ADMINISTRATION OFFICIAL: Well, if you're talking about -- you know, from our perspective, obviously we had stakeholders who were very concerned about having more access to the Canadian dairy market, which is potentially an enormously market for the United States.

And also we had stakeholders who were interested in, you know, having more competition with respect to Canada, in terms of IP and other type of areas. So those were, you know, issues that were significant to us from our prospective and I think we're ultimately quite satisfied with where that all ended up landing.

Q Hi, thanks for doing the call. Heather Long from the Washington Post. Can you clarify if there is a side letter on the 232 auto tariffs? Some Canadian reports out of Ottawa are indicating that there is some sort of side agreement that would be about 40 to 50 percent higher than auto parts levels that are in place now. So I was wondering if you could just kind of clarify, if there an official letter -- official document?

And then on dairy, similarly, there's reports out of Ottawa that market access for foreign suppliers -- that was about 3.25 percent under TPP. So I'm wondering if, does the U.S. get a higher percentage of that? Thanks.

SENIOR ADMINISTRATION OFFICIAL: Well, I think on -- again, on the 232, I'll refer to my previous comments. We've reached that accommodation that if there -- again, and, you know, this is handled by the Department of Commerce. There's not a study yet. Once the study is out, the President will have to make a decision.

But we have worked out an accommodation with both Mexico and Canada that is going to be set forth in side letters that will be made public this evening, at least on our website.

And, you know, with regard to dairy, I'm not in a positon to comment on, sort of, the particulars -- on the particular markets, you know, share number that you gave there -- other than just to say that, you know, from our perspective, we think it's a good deal for our farmers. We think it is.

And then there are different components of this deal. There's not just the market access. There was also the Class 7 issue. And, you know, as a package, we think it's something that is good for our farmers. But at the same time, it was, you know, I think it was something that is a fair deal for Canada as well.

So I think it was a good -- certainly a good outcome for us. But I think it was a good outcome, especially when paired against other parts of the agreement where Canada achieved some of it's negotiating (inaudible).

Q Hello?

SENIOR ADMINISTRATION OFFICIAL: Yes.

Q Was there an exchange for the Chapter 19 to stay in place? Was that an exchange for the greater access to the dairy market?

SENIOR ADMINISTRATION OFFICIAL: You know, listen, this is all a -- I mean, these agreements are complicated patchworks. You know, nothing is agreed until everything is agreed. You know, I don't know; I think everyone looks at the agreement as a whole and, you know, thinks about all of the different provisions -- you know, individually and collectively. And that's as far as I'm going to -- that's as far as I'll go on that.

Q Hi, it's Andrew Mayeda from Bloomberg. Thanks for doing the call. What information do you have one where you landed on procurement -- on government procurement? And secondly, I mean, I know you've already talked about this a bit, but any further details on -- you can provide on this accommodation with Canada and Mexico on the 232s would be appreciated. Thank you.

SENIOR ADMINISTRATION OFFICIAL: Yeah, I mean, sort of on the accommodation again -- I don't really have anything to add to that. Again, the text of these letters is something that we're going to be making public shortly.

On the procurements side, what we've done with Canada is we've agreed that we will deal with government procurement under the terms of the government procurement agreement. And with Mexico, we've negotiated a revision for the NAFTA 1.0 -- the NAFTA 1.0 government procurement chapter. And in particular we've changed some of the market access schedules in areas that were important to the United States.

Q Hi, Emerald Robinson, One America News. Thank you so much for doing the call. My question is, the Mexican Economy Minister has suggested that September 20th was the cutoff date to reach a deal in order to write up everything and create the language. So I just want to ask you a little bit about the timeline -- this deal coming with Canada in the 11th hour and given the language out and pushing through the congressional approval process. Thank you.

SENIOR ADMINISTRATION OFFICIAL: Well, I guess I'm not sure, you know, what -- precisely what you're asking. I mean, in terms of -- I mean, we've got the text. What we were required to do under TPA is to post the text today, 60 days before the signature date. And that's what we've been able to do.

We've -- the fact of the matter is that these negotiations have been going on for a long time. And although, you know, there were a number of issue -- very important issues that were not resolved until quite recently. But the vast majority of the text has been -- was written well before -- certainly, well before this weekend. And I think the way that these things oftentimes are closed at the end of the day is that there is kind of an intense period to finish everything up.

And, you know, fortunately we were able to -- we were able to get it done. It took a lot of work by, you know, a lot for great people on -- in the negotiating teams of all three countries. And fortunately, we were successful.

MS. DAVIS: Thank you [senior administration officials] for your briefing today. And thanks everyone for you time and participation in this call.

Again, this has been a background briefing call with the content attributable to "senior administration officials." The embargo lifts at the end of this call. If you have further questions, please contact USTR's Public and Media Affairs Office at Media@USTR.EOP.GOV.

And a special thanks to our moderator. Have a good night everyone.

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