October 1, 2018
Fast Facts
Bringing Business Up to Speed
Federal Issues

Canada agrees to revised NAFTA hours before deadline

After months of negotiation, it appears that Canada, the United States and Mexico have agreed on a revised version of the North American Free Trade Agreement -- although the new deal will likely have a new name.

The new U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement includes changes in language governing dairy imports, dispute resolution between countries, limits on online shopping that can be done tax-free, and limits on the U.S. threat of auto tariffs. Politico reports that Congress is unlikely to vote on the deal until new members are seated in 2019, and it's uncertain whether lawmakers will fall in line to support the deal.

Officials on both sides of the U.S.-Canada border praised the new deal.

"It will strengthen the middle class, and create good, well-paying jobs and new opportunities for the nearly half billion people who call North America home," said U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer and Canadian Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland in a joint statement.

The new deal doesn't end trade tensions between the U.S. and trading partners around the globe, The Washington Post reports. Tariffs on steel and aluminum imports will remain in place, and the president today renewed threats of additional tariffs against China.

Meanwhile, The New York Times reports that the threat of American tariffs on cars has apparently prompted Japan to negotiate directly with the United States. Japan has been inviting the USA to re-enter the 11-nation Trans-Pacific Partnership, but last week Japan agreed to start two-way negotiations with the United States. Those negotiations seem likely to give Japan a reprieve from any new auto tariffs as long as talks continue, the newspaper reported.

Contact Amy Anderson, AWB government affairs director for federal issues, to learn more.

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On the Road Again
Vote No on I-1631

No vote urged on pollution fee initiative

By The Walla Walla Union-Bulletin Editorial Board

Earlier this year we opposed Gov. Jay Inslee's effort to impose a carbon-emissions tax in the Washington state Legislature.

We now oppose a similar effort to impose a carbon tax -- now dubbed a pollution fee -- through Initiative 1631. We urge a no vote on I-1631 on the November ballot.

This does not mean we oppose all efforts to combat climate change, which we see as a real and serious threat to all of us.

But any effective effort to reduce the carbon emissions that contribute to climate change should be done on a national scale at the federal level. A state-by-state approach such as the initiative adopts won't achieve much except to create an economic burden on those living in Washington state...

Read the full editorial in The Union-Bulletin
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