Ratifying USMCA signals support for free trade, says Mexican president

2019-06-20 11:31

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MEXICO CITY, June 19 (Xinhua) -- Mexico's ratification of the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) is a clear signal of the country's support for free trade, Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador said Wednesday.

After Mexico's Senate overwhelmingly endorsed the deal earlier in the day, with 114 votes in favor, 4 against and 3 abstentions, Lopez Obrador celebrated the outcome, tweeting that it was "good news."

"We know we needed this ratification," which along with other measures "will change economic policy, as is happening," Lopez Obrador said.

"Now, under new circumstances, we can have trade ties, which are good and beneficial because they mean foreign investment in Mexico, they mean jobs in Mexico, they mean guaranteed trade in the United States for the goods we produce," he added.

Mexico is the first of the USMCA's three partner countries to ratify the agreement, which was negotiated to update and replace the 1994 North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), due to U.S. President Donald Trump's insistence that the former deal contributed to the U.S. trade deficit, and hurt domestic industry by losing jobs to Mexico.

The USMCA includes new chapters on e-commerce, anti-corruption measures, good regulatory practices, and competitiveness and cooperation to develop small- and medium-sized businesses, the Mexican Ministry of Economy said in a press release.

Signed by the three nations on Nov. 30, the USMCA will take effect once it is ratified by the legistures of all the three countries.

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