Issue 109 | July 19, 2019
Among Trump's Cabinet, Trade Chief Emerges As Democrat Favorite
U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer has been able to keep himself out of controversy between the House and the White House. However, there have been some tensions, with Lighthizer unsatisfied with the pace that the deal is moving, and the democrats waiting for workable solutions from him. He is described as the sole person trying to get the deal done, which may not be possible, even for someone who is appreciated by all sides of the political aisle. Read more
Democrats Talk USMCA Environmental Standards With Lighthizer 
The nine democrats assigned to negotiate the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) with the U.S. trade representative recently met to discuss concerns about how North American trade affects the environment -- the third of four main USMCA priorities for democrats. The last and most important for democrats -- enforcement of the signed deal -- is set to be discussed next week. The democrats have laid out what they want to see regarding these issues, and are now waiting to see how Lighthizer works to meet their expectations while still staying true to what is asked of him by the administration.
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France Now Backs U.S. Digital Tax Model, Urges Trade Probe End 
The French finance minister has requested that the U.S. drop its investigation into France's new digital tax due to France's decision to support the U.S. model for taxing tech companies. France's agreement signals a change in policy as France attempts to avoid unnecessary trade conflict with the United States. Both countries believe that the international Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development should handle the issue. France had previously sided with the U.K. on answering the issue of user-generated value, whereas the U.S. wanted to expand beyond that to marketing intangibles. The finance minister has stated that France is now waiting for the United States to make their own compromise on the issue to bridge the two sides together. Read more
China's Surplus with Trading Partners Falls Into Balance 
The International Monetary Fund's (IMF) most recent report on trade imbalances shows that China has dropped from being a net lender to roughly balanced. This step showcases China's change to focus on consumption growth, as opposed to relying on external demand. It is not clear if the trend will continue, or China's surplus will grow again after some external factors abate. China's current lack of account surplus means that trade imbalances rest largely in advanced economies. The U.S. and U.K. have noted deficits, and the IMF warned against protectionist trade measures, which are prone to negative consequences. It will also be releasing its update on global growth soon, which is expected to be lower based on recent U.S. threats to Chinese products. Read more
Manufacturers Group Lobbies Congress For New North American Trade Deal 
The nation's main manufacturer trade group recently sent a large number of members to visit members of Congress and urge them to approve the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA). This comes at a time when President Trump has already given notice that he plans to submit the deal to Congress, and U.S. trade representative Robert Lighthizer continues meeting with lawmakers to assuage their concerns about the deal. The manufacturer group stated their optimism about the deal moving forward. The USMCA has been called the primary focus of the group, who will continue pushing it through the fall. Read more
Mexican President To Meet U.S. Congressional Delegation, Promote USMCA Trade Deal 
Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador intends to meet visiting U.S. lawmakers to demonstrate the importance of the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) to the region. The deal has already been approved by the Mexican senate, and awaits approval by U.S. and Canadian legislatures. Read more
Global Issues Affecting the Los Angeles Region
Tuesday, Aug. 20
Join the Global Initiatives Council to hear from Dr. Chris Thornberg, founder of Beacon Economics. Thornberg will comment and discuss how the following topics affect the region's employment, economic adjustments and growth. 
Compiled by Center for Global Trade & Foreign Investment intern Nicholas Collins.

For more information, contact Jasmin Sakai-Gonzalez, 213.580.7569.