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Daily News

December 19, 2019

The House on Thursday passed the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement’s implementing bill 385-41, setting up the Trump administration's signature trade deal for Senate consideration – and ratification – in 2020.

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The Senate should not consider the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement under Trade Promotion Authority fast-track procedure because the Trump administration has failed to comply with the law, Sen. Pat Toomey (R-PA) said on Thursday.

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Major opposition parties in Canada's Parliament last week expressed concerns over the modified U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement, potentially throwing a wrench in the ratification process in Ottawa but not putting the deal's future in serious jeopardy, analysts said this week.

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December 18, 2019

The European Parliament on Wednesday overwhelmingly passed a resolution supporting aspects of an Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development digital tax proposal that Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin criticized earlier this month.

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The U.S. on Wednesday appealed a World Trade Organization compliance panel with India over countervailing duties to the non-functioning Appellate Body it hobbled, blocking India from retaliating against alleged U.S. non-compliance indefinitely.

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Senate Finance Committee members Tim Scott (SC) and James Lankford (OK) believe the U.S. should prioritize efforts to strike a bilateral deal with New Zealand next year, a subject Scott said he recently raised with U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer.

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December 17, 2019

The House Ways & Means Committee on Tuesday favorably reported the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement implementing bill out of committee, setting up a full House vote on Thursday.

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The House Ways & Means Committee on Tuesday passed a resolution that confirms congressional support for the World Trade Organization, but also highlights U.S. critiques of the institution, including of the embattled Appellate Body, which ceased functioning last week.

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The House on Tuesday passed a government spending bill that would reauthorize the Export-Import Bank for seven years, create a program to boost U.S. competitiveness against China and allow presidential Cabinet members to step in and serve on the bank’s board temporarily at times when it would otherwise lack a quorum.

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December 16, 2019

U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer on Monday sent Mexican Under Secretary for North America Jesús Seade a letter crafted to reassure Mexico's government that U.S. labor attachés promised in the Trump administration's U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement implementing legislation will not be akin to labor inspectors.

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The U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement protocol of amendment signed by the three countries last week is drawing praise from labor analysts and business representatives for its tweaks to some provisions in the original deal, but the efficacy of a new rapid-response enforcement tool is stirring some concern.

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December 13, 2019

The U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement implementing legislation, submitted to Congress on Friday, includes the creation of several interagency panels designated to oversee the implementation of the deal’s labor and auto rules, among other items.

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Senate Finance Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley (R-IA) on Friday announced the White House sent Congress the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement implementing bill, setting up the House Ways & Means Committee to consider the bill on Tuesday.

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China agreed to increase its purchases of U.S. goods and services by $200 billion as part of a phase-one deal, including upping its buys of U.S. agricultural products to $40-50 billion per year, U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer told reporters on Friday.

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GENEVA -- Indonesia has joined World Trade Organization plurilateral talks on electronic commerce while arguing that a moratorium on imposing duties on electronic transmissions should not be made permanent -- the opposite of the stance of many other participants including the U.S.

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The U.S.’ 25 percent tariffs on $250 billion worth Chinese goods will remain in place, but the 15 percent tariffs on about $120 billion on Chinese goods will be cut to 7.5 percent as part of a phase-one trade agreement, President Trump announced on Friday, adding the tariffs on $160 billion worth of goods slated to take effect Sunday were suspended.

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December 12, 2019

The United States is expected to cut in half tariffs on roughly $360 billion on Chinese goods in exchange for a promise from Beijing to purchase more U.S. goods if President Trump agrees to the terms U.S. and Chinese negotiators have reached on a phase-one trade deal, according to sources close to the talks.

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The Senate Finance Committee will not hold a mock markup of the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement implementing bill, trade subcommittee Chairman John Cornyn (R-TX) said on Thursday, lamenting what he called a break from decades of precedent.

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In the late-stage U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement negotiations that ended this week, Mexico accepted a version of a labor enforcement mechanism and penalties for workers’ rights violations it had initially rejected because of a range of additional requirements that were attached to the proposals, Mexico’s chief trade negotiator told Inside U.S. Trade in an interview this week.

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The European Commission on Thursday proposed an amendment to its trade enforcement law that would allow it to impose retaliatory tariffs on countries that block the resolution of a dispute at the World Trade Organization.

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