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Industry Outlines Key Points in NAFTA Renegotiation

Sep 2017

VI joined 113 other industry and business organizations in sending a letter to the Trump administration outlining specific suggestions for improvements to NAFTA.  With delegates from the US, Canada and Mexico currently discussing upgrades to the agreement, industry groups are focused on maintaining market access and investment provisions, enforced through investor-state dispute settlements (ISDS).

“The existing NAFTA framework protects American individual, non-profit and business investors by extending several of the private property protections already found in the U.S. Constitution and U.S. law, including due process, non-discrimination, fair treatment by the government and compensation for the seizure of property. Each of these disciplines is directly enforceable by the investor through a neutral arbitration system, known as investor-state dispute settlement (ISDS).”

The letter also noted the important opportunity to improve NAFTA and outlined specific areas that should guide the discussions, including:

  • Ensuring intellectual property is fully protected as in the United States as a protected investment;
  • Guaranteeing all sectors are afforded the same protections and access to ISDS to enforce those protections;
  • Improving U.S. investment access in Canada and Mexico on a non-discriminatory basis,including by locking in reforms that have opened markets since NAFTA was negotiated;
  • Adding stronger disciplines against forced technology transfers and localization;
  • Expanding access to ISDS enforcement for breaches of major investment contracts; 
  • Extending the enforcement period to at least ten years after any potential termination of the agreement, to ensure that American investment is appropriately and fully protected.

U.S. vinyl resin manufacturers are net exporters with America’s largest trading partners, contributing to an industry trade surplus with Canada, Mexico and China.  Additionally, U.S. vinyl resin exports account for approximately 35% of total sales and the number is expected to grow by more than 30% by 2019.

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