Daily Video

October 9, 2018

Inside the new trade deal between the U.S., Mexico and Canada



Directions: Read the summary with your students, watch the video (if helpful, follow along with the transcript) and then answer the discussion questions.


Summary: President Donald Trump is hailing the new United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement, or USMCA, trade deal as a big win for America. Under the deal announced on Sunday, auto workers’ wages will increase by 2023, U.S. farmers will gain greater access to Canadian dairy markets and 75 percent of car parts will need to be manufactured in all three countries to qualify for zero tariffs (up 13.5 percent from NAFTA, North American Free Trade Agreement). Economics experts say, however, that the agreement is not a big departure from NAFTA signed in 1994, and not the radical change Trump had long promised. While NAFTA had torn down trade barriers leading to an increase in trade between the three nations, critics said it cost American jobs after manufacturers moved to Mexico to take advantage of of low-wages. The deal still needs to be ratified by all three governments’ legislatures.




1. Essential question: How do international trade deals affect the economy?


2. Do you think the new trade deal lives up to the high expectations that the Trump Administration set for it? Why or why not?


3. The new trade deal includes a provision that Mexico must enforce stronger protections for its labor force, including higher wages and union representation. Do you think the U.S. should be concerned for the well-being of citizens in Canada and Mexico? Explain your response.


4. Why was there such tension between the three nations over the deal, particularly between the U.S and Canada?


Extension activity:


Read the article Canada-U.S. agree on new trade deal to replace NAFTAHow does the new deal compare to NAFTA?


PBS NewsHour Student Reporting Labs’ Thomas Maxwell contributed to today’s Daily News Story.


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