Nafta, The North American Free Trade Agreement

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NAFTA NAFTA, the North American Free Trade Agreement, is the largest free market agreement in the world. It includes the US, Canada, and Mexico, and was put in place on January 1, 1994 ( The agreement was signed by US President Bill Clinton, Mexican President Carlos Salinas, and Canadian Prime Minister Jean Chrétien (Sergie, 2014). Its purpose was to do away with tariff barriers between the three nations on goods and services, remove international investment restrictions, and protect intellectual property rights ( However, many economists postulate that NAFTA has been a major cause of the decrease in US manufacturing. When put into practice, NAFTA immediately eliminated about half of existing tariffs, especially in agriculture and textiles. The rest were phased out gradually over 15 years. It eliminated nontariff trade barriers as well, opening the borders to trucks transporting goods by 2008. It also established “national goods status” ( for all the products imported from NAFTA countries ( Of course, the supporters and creators of NAFTA had good intentions. The projected outcomes of the free trade agreement would have been very beneficial to the three countries involved. Trade experts projected that the US trade surplus with Mexico would grow, and that this surplus would create 170,000 net new jobs in the US (Public Citizen). Supporters said that more exports to Mexico would create more jobs, and with more imports from both countries
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