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What’s Next for Regional Trade Following USMCA Signing?

In November, leaders from Canada, the United States and Mexico formally signed a new trade agreement to replace NAFTA. However, before policies can be established, the USMCA (US-Mexico-Canada Agreement) must be formally adopted by each country’s legislatures.

Legislation approving the new agreement is expected to be introduced in Congress during the first quarter of 2019, according to the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. Here is a closer look at the timeline for adoption:

  • The president must provide Congress with a description of changes to existing laws necessary to implement the agreement within 60 days of signing it (i.e., January 29, 2019).
  • The U.S. International Trade Commission may take up to 105 days from the date of the agreement’s signing to report on how it will affect jobs and the economy (i.e., Feb.15, 2019). In the past, Congress has waited for these reports before considering a new trade agreement, but Congress is not legally required to wait for the report.
  • TPA requires the president to send Congress a draft statement of administrative action, as well as the text of the final agreement, at least 30 days before submitting implementing legislation. The statement describes the administration’s interpretation of the agreement and the significant actions it will take to implement it.
  • The House Ways and Means and Senate Finance committees may hold markups before they receive the implementing bill to provide feedback to the administration, which drafts the bill. The administration is not obligated to take the feedback from these “mock markups” into account in the bill.
  • Finally, the president sends the implementing bill to Congress along with a final statement of administrative action and a justification for the deal.

Learn five ways the proposed changes in USMCA mean for Southeast Michigan here.