Trump Sticks with NAFTA, Toes Line with EPA Standards

Trump's campaign message about withdrawing from NAFTA takes a turn.

2017 Getty Images

On Thursday the head of the EPA met with automakers to discuss the future of fuel economy standards. 

Ever since President Donald Trump ordered a review of the EPA standards in March, there has been some concern that the existing policy would be tanked or altered drastically for automakers.  Prior to today's meeting, Mitch Bainwol, chief executive of the Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers, made it clear to the administration:

Automakers want rational, predictable, stable policy, not a rollback of the existing standards

-Mitch Bainwol

Right on the heels of EPA meetings, the Detroit Free Press reported that repsentatives of the major American automakers told the Trunmp administration that the North America Free Trade Agreement, also known as NAFTA, is a critical alliance put in place to strengthen manufacturing and profits for a majority of the companies involved.

 Donald Trump had said he was ready to withdraw from NAFTA, but instead, he had this to say after he received calls from leaders of Mexico and Canada:

They called me and they said, rather than terminating NAFTA, could you please renegotiate? I respect their countries very much. The relationship is very special and I said I will hold on the termination, let’s see if we can make it a fair deal.

-President Donald Trump
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Trump Talks with Automakers

Both EPA standards and NAFTA have massive implications for the automotive industry's long-term plans for product development and manufacturing.  However, many agree NAFTA could be reformed to better suit the modern needs of the United States:

"Does it need to be reformed? Could it be reformed? Of course, currency manipulation is something that we’re quite passionate about being included in all of our trade agreements — and that is not something that’s featured in NAFTA. We would hope to see that in any renegotiation."

-Bob Shanks, Ford CFO

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