USMCA Agreement Promises Trade Boost

Pelosi announces potential North America trade deal

Draft agreement on a United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement may herald improvements for industry across the continent and boost the outlook for breakbulk operators in 2020, according to the American Chemistry Council.
Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi announced that the Democrats had reached an agreement on trade that will likely be ratified by Congress in 2020.
“With the transformative changes we won, Democrats have achieved a #USMCA agreement that is infinitely better for American workers than what was originally proposed by the Trump Administration,” Pelosi tweeted.
Integrated supply chains
The deal will end uncertainty over North American trade that had impeded growth since Trump pulled back from the North American Free Trade Agreement.

“ACC and our members are strongly encouraged by the speaker’s announcement of a potential agreement that would codify important improvements to USMCA and possibly fast-track its passage in Congress. We commend Ambassador Lighthizer and Speaker Pelosi for their dogged pursuit of a trade agreement that will benefit U.S. businesses, workers, and consumers,” a spokesperson for the ACC said.

The ACC predicts that the new USMCA deal will deliver “benefits of increased regulatory cooperation” and drive innovation “across borders” to take advantage of integrated supply chains.

Growth Outlook Remains Weak

Despite the positive news for North American trade, the ACC maintains a relatively sober outlook for chemicals growth next year, with weakness in global manufacturing and uncertainty in trade policy further moderating U.S. chemicals output growth.

“Due to slowing growth prospects across much of the globe and rising trade tensions, exports of chemicals and some chemistry-containing goods fell this year,” said Kevin Swift, ACC chief economist.

Overall, U.S. chemicals trade is forecast to fall by 3 percent in 2019, down to U$242 billion, recovering by just 1 percent in 2020. Exports will fall also reaching just U$138 billion in 2020.