NAFTA talks resume as Mulhern says mend, don’t end |

NAFTA talks resume as Mulhern says mend, don’t end

Jim Mulhern
The Hagstrom Report |

Officials from Canada and Mexico and the United States began a week of technical meetings on the North American Free Trade Agreement on Dec. 9 at the Mayflower Hotel in Washington.

The latest meetings follow the release of a blog post by National Milk Producers Federation President Jim Mulhern titled “NAFTA must be mended, not ended.”

The headline is significant because the milk producers have backed the Trump administration’s proposal for Canada to end its supply management system for dairy, a proposal that the Canadian government has said is a nonstarter.

Mulhern also noted National Milk joined with other farm groups to write a letter to Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross urging President Donald Trump not to follow through on his threat to withdraw from NAFTA.

“We emphasized that a U.S. withdrawal from NAFTA would also disrupt critical industry supply chains, close markets, eliminate jobs, and increase prices for many of the basic goods purchased by American consumers,” Mulhern wrote.

Top trade officials from the United States, Canada and Mexico are not scheduled to attend the Washington meeting this week. The next formal round, which top officials will attend, is scheduled in late January in Montreal.