Consider the interaction between and contradictions of the NAFTA Implementation Act and the U.S. Constitution’s Treaty Clause. Which ones stand out to you the most? Why?
The United States constitution treaty clause means that the president is empowered to propose and negotiate agreements which have to be confirmed by the senate, between the United States and other countries, which become treaties between the two after the advice and consent of a supermajority of the US senate. (Wikipedia)
NAFTA is an agreement between three countries which are the United States, Canada and Mexico for free trade. So the interaction between NAFTA and the US treaty clause is very obvious. Also it is obvious because for the US to get out of the NAFTA agreement, there should be a written notice given by the president of the US to both other parties stating a six month notice and then they can be out. But the contradiction of this whole situation is that the president alone can’t make that decision. He has to get the consent of the senate, and that law is only made for treaties, but since NAFTA is an agreement, there is no law stating anything about the case. Many presidents have tried to get out of this agreement or renegotiating the terms, and every president talks about doing the same before the campaign ends, but none of these promises was ever implemented. So the main contradiction here is that the constitution does not state who has the power to end or withdraw from treaties, meaning that even if NAFTA was a treaty, this would not make the situation any easier. So the one that stands out the most I believe is that there is no solution basically for this because there is no clear answer of who has the power to make such a decision.
Consider the interaction between and contradictions of the NAFTA Implementation Act and the U.S. Constitution’s Treaty Clause.
The North American Free Trade Agreement, or NAFTA, is a three-country accord negotiated by the governments of Canada, Mexico, and the United States that entered into force in January 1994. NAFTA’s terms, which were implemented gradually through January 2008, provided for the elimination of most tariffs on products traded among the three countries. Liberalization of trade in agriculture, textiles, and automobile manufacturing was a major focus. The deal also sought to protect intellectual property, establish dispute-resolution mechanisms, and, through side agreements, implement labor and environmental safeguards. (James McBride, 2017)
The U.S. Constitution Treaty Clause Treaty Clause, which empowers the president of the United States to propose and chiefly negotiate agreements, which must be confirmed by the Senate, between the United States and other countries, which become treaties between the United States and other countries after the advice and consent of a super majority of the United States Senate. (Treaty Clause, n.d.)
The North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NAFTA) – pact that calls for the gradual removal of tariffs and other trade barriers on most goods produced and sold in North America. NAFTA became effective in Canada, Mexico, and the United States on January 1, 1994.
Elimination of Tariffs; Rules of Origin – The core provisions of NAFTA provide for the gradual elimination by the member states of all tariffs on major categories of U.S.,
Easing Market Access – NAFTA contains a number of principles designed to abolish trade restrictions other than tariffs.
Investment Protections – Another important aspect of NAFTA is the prohibition of many restrictions on investment by individuals of one member state in businesses and assets in other member states..
Intellectual Property Rights – In the area of intellectual property rights, NAFTA provides an even higher standard of protection that the TRIPS Agreement.
Coordinated Competition Policy; State Enterprises; and Government Procurement – NAFTA also requires that the member states maintain or adopt rules against anticompetitive business practices and pledge to cooperate on enforcing competition law. In addition, governmental enterprises at all levels (federal, state, or local) as well as government-sanctioned monopolies are required to abide by general NAFTA principles of non-discrimination when exercising administrative, governmental, or regulatory authority, including granting of licenses.
Dispute Resolution – Among the most innovative (and controversial) provisions of NAFTA are those relating to the resolution of disputes over trade between the three member states.
A NAFTA investor who alleges that a host government has breached its investment obligations under Chapter 11 may, at its option, choose any one of four separate dispute resolution mechanisms:
- arbitration before the World Bank’s International Center for the Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID);
- arbitration pursuant to ICSID’s separate “Additional Facility Rules”;
- private arbitration under the rules of the United Nations Commission for International Trade law;
- state court litigation in the host country’s domestic courts.
- The most controversial aspect of the three arbitration options is that any final awards that result from the arbitrations must be enforced by the domestic courts of all member states. (Anonymous, n.d.)