MEXICO CITY (Reuters) – Mexico sees a push to close a dispute resolution loophole in the USMCA trade deal as a way to protect its interests as well as helping satisfy demands by U.S. Democrats that the deal contain stricter labor measures, a senior official said on Thursday.
Reuters reported last week that Mexico was working closely with U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer to close a loophole in the new United States-Mexico-Canada trade deal that allows a country to refuse to form a dispute panel.
Making that fix would ensure that Canada or the United States could form a dispute panel for alleged violations of labor or environmental rules contained in the trade deal and also give Mexico guarantees it could form such a panel for issues affecting its own interests, said Jesus Seade, deputy foreign minister for North America.
“Of course, this could not be only for the areas where the demand might eventually come from the U.S. or issues against Mexico, which is labor and environment. It would have to be something across the board,” he said in an interview with Reuters.
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