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The House of Representatives confirmed support for a revised trade deal – called the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) – that represents an overhaul of the 1994 North American Free Trade Agreement.

“This is good news for equipment manufacturers, the 1.3 million men and women of our industry, and the entire U.S. economy,” said Dennis Slater, president of the Association of Equipment Manufacturers (AEM). “We’re another step closer to getting the USMCA ratified. Getting this across the finish line will preserve duty-free market access to our most important trade partners, add more than $68 billion to the U.S. economy, and create 176,000 U.S. jobs. We applaud the work done by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Richard Neal (D-Mass.), U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer, and everyone involved in these negotiations. We look forward to Congress ratifying the agreement and President Trump signing it into law.” 

Since the creation of NAFTA two decades ago, equipment manufacturers have benefited greatly from duty-free market access to our industry’s two largest export markets, Canada and Mexico. Equipment manufacturers support 1.3 million jobs in the U.S. and 149,000 in Canada. The industry also contributes $188 billion to the U.S. and Canadian economies.

Over the past two years, AEM has called on both the Trump administration and Congress to deliver an updated North American trade agreement for the 21st century. USMCA fulfills many of our industry’s goals and strengthens North American equipment manufacturing. 

Efforts include co-hosting the Vice President Mike Pence at an equipment manufacturing facility earlier this year in support of the agreement, sending a letter in support of the USMCA to Chairman Neal (D-Mass.) and the nine members of the House Democrats’ Trade Working Group, and running an ongoing public education campaign on the various benefits of a ratified USMCA. AEM is also a member of the USMCA Coalition.

National Association of Manufacturers (NAM) President and CEO Jay Timmons released the following statement welcoming the announced deal.

"Manufacturers support the USMCA, and we are encouraged that the administration and House Democrats have forged a path forward, with the support of Canada and Mexico as well. To be sure, as with any agreement of this nature, not every objective that we sought was met. For instance, we are extremely disappointed that the agreement missed an opportunity to set the gold standard for the protection of American-made lifesaving innovations and inventions. Protection of intellectual property is a key principle and critical for the long-term vitality of the manufacturing industry and the men and women who work in our sector.

"Nevertheless, a ratified USMCA will deliver increased certainty for manufacturers – especially for the 2 million manufacturing workers whose jobs depend on North American trade.

"This has been a long process, and manufacturers will continue to work closely with the administration and both the House and Senate to approve the USMCA by the end of this year. We deeply appreciate the hard work of the Trump administration, particularly the United States Trade Representative, Ambassador Bob Lighthizer, as well as leaders of both parties in Congress who have brought us to this point and continue to listen to manufacturers."