History Of The North American Free Trade Agreement
One of the main NAFTA provisions granted to products imported from other NAFTA countries is the status of „domestic goods“. No national, provincial or local government could impose taxes or customs duties on these goods. In addition, either tariffs were eliminated at the time of the agreement or should be phased out in 5 or 10 equal steps. The only exception at exit was the specified sensitive stations, for which the end-of-life period is 15 years. Two important additions to NAFTA – the North American Agreement on Labour Cooperation and the North American Agreement on Environmental Cooperation – have had a significant impact on the effectiveness of the agreement. Nevertheless, NAFTA has somehow fulfilled its objectives and has brought trade between the United States and Mexico to $481.5 billion in 2015 and trade between the United States and Canada to a total of $518.2 billion. That`s an increase of 255 percent and 63.5 percent respectively, according to the Mexican Embassy in Canada. While the jury isn`t sure if these phenomenal increases are exclusively due to NAFTA (which they almost certainly aren`t), experts believe the contract certainly helped. The agreement entered into force under Bush`s successor, President Bill Clinton, who signed the agreement himself on December 8, 1993. In January 1994, the trade agreement was in force. Since its launch, NAFTA has benefited the economy by increasing total trade between countries to well over $1 trillion. „NAFTA is perhaps the worst trade deal ever signed, but certainly ever signed in this country,“ Trump told then-candidate Hillary Clinton during a debate in 2016.
In 2015, the Congressional Research Service concluded that „the overall net effect of NAFTA on the U.S. economy appears relatively modest, primarily because trade with Canada and Mexico accounts for a small percentage of U.S. GDP. . . .