Canada ratifies USMCA

Canada’s House of Parliament and Senate have ratified the United States – Mexico – Canada Agreement (USMCA). Canadian approval was the final step to replacing the 25-year-old North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) and one of Parliament’s final steps before shutting down for five weeks in response to the coronavirus. The three countries now have up to three months to finalize the regulations that will govern USMCA implementation. President Trump has requested a June 1 entry-into-force date.

In the meantime, Christine Sohar Henter, NAFEM legal counsel, Barnes & Thornburg, recommends members become familiar with the sections of the agreement that affect their businesses. Here is the full agreement and here is a fact sheet highlighting how the USMCA impacts small- to medium-size enterprises. The Congressional Research Service also issued a report summarizing the key similarities and differences between the USMCA and its predecessor, the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA).