House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy said on Sunday a deal with Mexico for revisions to the North American Free Trade Agreement could be reached shortly.
“I think it’d be very soon,” McCarthy, R-Calif., told Maria Bartiromo on “Sunday Morning Futures.” “We’d vote on it in the next Congress.”
He noted the need for a “modernization” of the trade agreement, which was enacted in 1994 under President Bill Clinton. The deal created a trilateral trade bloc between the U.S., Mexico and Canada.
NAFTA has come under fierce scrutiny by President Trump since his time on the campaign trail, even calling the agreement the “worst trade deal ever made.” Attempts to form a new pact faltered numerous times between the three countries, and talks with Mexico have been focused on creating new rules for the auto industry.
Trump has argued that lower wages for employees in Mexico have cost jobs at General Motors, Ford and Fiat Chrysler – “The Big Three” – all of which have production sites in Mexico. The president said in June that the deal could remain trilateral or could be renegotiated into two separate arrangements.
Mexico’s Economy Minister Ildefonso Guajardo told reporters on Sunday a deal between the U.S. and Mexico was nearing completion.