Issue 86 | July 21, 2017
Trump nominates China critic as deputy U.S. trade representative
President Trump has nominated Dennis Shea, the vice chairman of U.S.-China Economic and Security Review Commission, as deputy U.S. Trade Representative. Shea is a lawyer with 30 years of experience in government, which includes advising Sen. Elizabeth Dole and working as a lobbyist. He has served on the commission, which is in charge of annual assessments for the security, economic and trade relationship between the U.S. and China since 2007. The panel recommended banning China's state-owned firms from acquiring U.S. companies, arguing Beijing uses state-owned firms to reach its national security goals. Read more.
USTR calls special session under U.S.-Korea Free Trade Agreement
United States Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer formally notified the Republic of Korea that the U.S. is calling a special joint committee meeting under the U.S.-Korea Free Trade Agreement (KORUS) to take place in Washington, D.C. next month on a day to be agreed upon by both parties. According to the USTR, since KORUS went into effect in March 2012, the U.S. trade deficit in goods with South Korea has doubled from $13.2 billion to $27.6 billion and the purpose of the meeting goes beyond reviewing the progress on the implementation of the agreement. It will be an opportunity to start the process of negotiating to remove barriers to U.S. trade and consider needed amendments to the agreement to address and resolve the significant trade imbalance. Read more.
Japan-EU trade agreement may hurt U.S. meat producers
The Japan-EU Economic Partnership Agreement, signed July 6, calls for Europe to lower tariffs on Japanese automobiles in return for Japan lowering tariffs on European meat and dairy products. Japan has been the largest export market for U.S. beef and the second-largest export market for U.S. pork, therefore any moves that would give Europe preferential tariff provisions over the U.S., concern U.S. beef and pork farmers. Analysts believe that the deal was agreed in part because of President Donald Trump's decision to withdraw from the Trans-Pacific Partnership and that it also will make it difficult for the U.S. to replicate the favorable terms of the TPP in future bilateral trade agreements with Japan. Read more.
Small Businesses Urge Trump To Drop ISDS In NAFTA 2.0
Leading small and medium-size companies are asking Trump in a letter to eliminate investor-state dispute settlement clauses from all current trade deals, beginning with the NAFTA renegotiation. The business owners believe that the ISDS system offers a privilege for foreign multinational corporations, which allows eliminating many of the costs and risks of moving operations to low-wage countries, and that it incentivizes job offshoring. Read more.
Merkel reiterates support for US-EU trade deal
The dpa news agency reported in the beginning of July that German Chancellor Angela Merkel told a business audience in Bavaria that President Donald Trump's administration had signaled it is ready to negotiate and that the Trans-Atlantic agreement remains on her daily agenda. Moreover, on a trip to Berlin last month, U.S. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross said the U.S. and EU should have a free trade agreement. The Trans-Atlantic Trade and Investment Partnership deal, known as TTIP, started under the Obama administration but has been stalled since last year. Read more
U.S. Says It Aims To Cut Trade Deficits Through NAFTA revamp
The Trump administration released its NAFTA renegotiation objectives, which aim to improve the U.S. trade balance and reduce the trade deficit with NAFTA countries, to strengthen rules of origin, eliminate barriers to U.S. investment in all sectors, and secure commitments from Canada and Mexico not to manipulate their currencies. While Trump's campaign pledge is turned into policy, there are chances that both Mexico and Canada don't cave to U.S. demands because of their domestic pressures. The renegotiation is ideally to be wrapped up by early next year before Mexico's presidential election in mid-2018 and America's midterm election that November. Read more.
Compiled by Center for Global Trade & Foreign Investment Interns Juliana Dagnese and Cheng-Hui Lin.

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