Bloomberg BNA Quotes Jean-Rene Broussard on Obstacles Facing Trump Attempts to Undo NAFTA

Akin Gump international trade counsel Jean-Rene Broussard was quoted by Bloomberg BNA for the story “President's Promised NAFTA Redo Hits Speed Bumps,” on hurdles to Donald Trump’s campaign vow to undo the North American Free Trade Agreement.

One of the procedural steps required by the Bipartisan Congressional Trade Priorities and Accountability Act (TPA) to enter into trade negotiations is written notice to Congress, the article notes.

After this notice, Broussard said, a presidential proclamation would be published in the Federal Register. Then, 30 days before commencement of negotiations, the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) is required to post a list of specific negotiating objectives along with the agency’s explanation of how it plans to achieve them.

One of the hurdles facing this effort is the fact that Trump’s USTR nominee has yet to be confirmed, which, Broussard notes, may delay the start of the NAFTA talks: “It'll probably slip a bit if they haven't been able to figure out the USTR situation. I think Congress would want someone in place before they do it.”

The TPA requirements, he said, assume that the USTR is the primary trade negotiator. Broussard also noted that the statute specifies that the USTR will produce the list of negotiating objectives. He added, “It seems they will need someone in place at USTR before moving forward.”