Categories for Trade Deals

7,392. 4/20/2017

TRADE DEALS/TRUMP MEMORANDA: Memorandum for the Director of the Federal Bureau
By the authority vested in me as President by the Constitution and the laws of the United States of America, including the Trade Expansion Act of 1962… Core industries such as steel (including specialty steel unique to defense applications), aluminum, vehicles, aircraft, shipbuilding, and semiconductors are critical elements of our manufacturing and defense industrial bases, which we must defend against unfair trade practices and other abuses.”

-Donald Trump, “Memorandum for the Director of the Federal Bureau,” White House Office of the Press Secretary, April 20, 2017

7,376. 4/20/2017

NATIONAL SECURITY/TRADE DEALS/TRUMP AS PRESIDENT: “President Donald Trump will direct his administration Thursday [4-20-17] to investigate whether imports of foreign steel are harming US national security, according to a White House official.
Trump plans to sign a memo ordering the probe during a noon ceremony surrounded by representatives of the US steel industry. The memo will fall under the Trade Expansion Act of 1962, a section of which permits a US president to restrict trade if he determines it is harmful to US security.
The order will require his Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross to conduct the administration-wide review within 270 days, after which Trump will decide on curbing the import of foreign steel.
Trump has railed against China for its excess steel production, but it’s unclear whether any potential restrictions on steel imports will fall solely on China following the administration review.
The US imports steel from over 90 countries, according to the International Trade Administration. Top providers include Canada, Mexico, Russia, Brazil, Turkey and Germany.
The US has maintained a longstanding trade deficit in steel products, though the ITA says the US steel trade deficit narrowed in 2016.”

-Kevin Liptak, “Trump to explore national security implications of steel imports,” CNN Politics,, April 20, 2017 9:06am

7,374. 4/20/2017

FOREIGN POLICY/TRADE DEALS/TRUMP AS PRESIDENT: “The ‘America First’ president who vowed to extricate America from onerous overseas commitments appears to be warming up to the view that when it comes to global agreements, a deal’s a deal.
From NAFTA to the Iran nuclear agreement to the Paris climate accord, President Donald Trump’s campaign rhetoric is colliding with the reality of governing. Despite repeated pledges to rip up, renegotiate or otherwise alter them, the U.S. has yet to withdraw from any of these economic, environmental or national security deals, as Trump’s past criticism turns to tacit embrace of several key elements of U.S. foreign policy…
Yet with one exception — an Asia-Pacific trade deal that already had stalled in Congress — Trump’s administration quietly has laid the groundwork to honor the international architecture of deals it has inherited. It’s a sharp shift from the days when Trump was declaring the end of a global-minded America that negotiates away its interests and subsidizes foreigners’ security and prosperity.
Trump had called the Iran deal the ‘worst’ ever, and claimed climate change was a hoax. But in place of action, the Trump administration is only reviewing these agreements, as it is doing with much of American foreign policy.”

-Associated Press, “Donald Trump Was Critical of Global Deals. President Trump Is Slow to Nix Them,” TIME Magazine, April 20, 2017 8:10am

7,216. 04/09/2017

TRADE DEALS/TRUMP AS PRESIDENT: “President Trump is considering an executive action that would launch a formal investigation into the way U.S. trading partners use subsidies and a tactic known as ‘dumping’ to skew imports and exports, a White House official said Sunday evening.
If signed, the executive action would call for a review of foreign trading practices and could, depending on the results, be followed by retaliatory trade measures from the administration.
The executive action would additionally reflect a tension within the White House between the economic populists, who have argued for more aggressive and adversarial moves against foreign countries, and the growing influence of pragmatists, who have called for a more measured approach.”

-Damien Paletta, “Trump considers investigation of international trade partners,” The Wall Street Journal online, April 9, 2017 8:53pm

7,206. 4/8/2017

CHINA/TRADE DEALS: “It was a great honor to have President Xi Jinping and Madame Peng Liyuan of China as our guests in the United States. Tremendous… goodwill and friendship was formed, but only time will tell on trade.”

-Donald Trump,, Apr 8, 2017 09:50 am and 9:51 am

7,117. 3/31/2017

DHS/TRADE DEALS/TREASURY/TRUMP EXEC ORDERS: ‘Establishing Enhanced Collection and Enforcement of Anti-Dumping and Countervailing Duties and Violations of Trade and Customs Law’
The order directs the secretary of homeland security to develop a plan within 90 days to combat two types of non-trade barriers placed against the U.S.: anti-dumping and countervailing duties.
The order also directs the DHS Secretary and Treasury secretary to step up seizure of counterfeit goods and protect American companies from intellectual property right infringement.”

-Avalon Zoppo, Amanda Proenca Santos, and Jackson Hudgins, “Here’s the Full List of Donald Trump’s Executive Orders,” NBC News, Oct 17, 2017 11:58am

7,115. 3/31/2017

COMMERCE/TRADE DEALS/TRUMP EXEC ORDERS: ‘Omnibus Report on Significant Trade Deficits’
The order directs the Commerce Department and U.S. Trade Representative to compile a report on trade practices that contribute to the trade deficit. The report will look at each of America’s trade partners and assess whether the country’s trade practices unfairly discriminate against the U.S.
Forms of discrimination the report will assess includes non-tariff barriers, anti-dumping and intellectual property theft. Within 90 days, the report will be sent to the White House detailing causes for the deficit.”

-Avalon Zoppo, Amanda Proenca Santos, and Jackson Hudgins, “Here’s the Full List of Donald Trump’s Executive Orders,” NBC News, Oct 17, 2017 11:58am

7,098. 03/31/2017

BUDGET/TRADE DEALS/TRUMP AS PRESIDENT: “Reducing the deficit in external payments is a key objective of the Trump administration. The shortfall means that U.S. residents are consuming more products and services produced abroad than foreign consumers do in the U.S. If this could be reversed, Donald Trump’s advisers reason, it would mean that more of the globally consumed items would have been made in the U.S. with American labor.
Since the Trump election victory was predicated on improving the lot of domestic workers, this has a lot of political appeal. But his proposals mean there would be no winners in financial markets. Is there a way the Trump administration can achieve its campaign promise and have a positive impact on equity and bond markets at the same time? A history of U.S. trade negotiations over the past two decades, and a closer examination of the U.S. external payments deficit, suggest that there is such a path.
Peter Navarro, Director of the White House National Trade Council, uses the Keynesian income/expenditure identity to justify restrictions on trade. Gross domestic product is the sum of consumption, investment, government spending and net exports. It is that final item that authorities are focused on. By limiting imports through new tariffs, net exports would rise, and GDP would be higher as well. In addition to positive implications for employment, reduced competition from imports would mean higher revenues for U.S. companies, pushing up equity valuations. (Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross said Trump will order a comprehensive study to identify every form of ‘trade abuse’ that contributes to U.S. deficits with foreign countries.)”

-Komal Sri-Kumar, “The Trump Trade Policies That Can Benefit Financial Markets,” Bloomberg, March 31, 2017 8:25am

7,052. 3/30/2017

CHINA/TRADE DEALS/TRUMP AS PRESIDENT: “The meeting next week with China will be a very difficult one in that we can no longer have massive trade deficits…and job losses. American companies must be prepared to look at other alternatives.”

-Donald Trump,, March 30, 2017 05:16pm

7,046. 3/30/2017

NAFTA/TRADE DEALS/TRUMP AS PRESIDENT: “President Donald Trump’s campaign promise to bring sweeping changes to the ‘terrible’ North American Free Trade Agreement just got a dose of reality.
An eight-page draft letter to Congress outlining the administration’s negotiating objectives shows how daunting it will be to translate campaign rhetoric to real policy changes that will achieve Trump’s goals of bringing jobs back to the U.S.and cutting the trade deficit.
Critics are pointing out that the White House blueprint for changing NAFTA sounds a lot like the defunct Trans-Pacific Partnership deal negotiated by the Obama administration because it includes calls for U.S. trading partners to adhere to strict labor and environmental standards. At the same time, it doesn’t address issues that Trump touted on the campaign trail, such as currency manipulation.
‘For those who trusted Trump’s pledge to make NAFTA *much better* for working people, it’s a punch in the face because the proposal describes TPP or any other same-old, same-old trade deal,’ said Lori Wallach, director of Public Citizen’s Global Trade Watch and a leading critic of current trade policy.”

-Adam Behsudi, “Trump’s NAFTA changes aren’t much different from Obama’s,” Politico, March 30, 2017 02:47pm

6,875. 3/14/2017

G20/TRADE DEALS/TAXES/TRUMP AS PRESIDENT: “A senior Canadian Finance Ministry official says there is a lot of uncertainty over what direction the United States wants to take on issues such as trade and taxation policy ahead of the upcoming meeting of G20 finance ministers.”

-Bill Trott, “Highlights: The Trump presidency on March 14 at 3:05 p.m. ET,” Reuters, March 14, 2017

6,874. 3/14/2017

HEALTHCARE/OBAMACARE(ACA)/TRADE DEALS/TRUMP AS PRESIDENT: “One of the biggest mysteries in global markets so far in the Trump era is the historically low level of volatility that has prevailed despite all the turmoil and uncertainty that analysts warned his victory would unleash.
Shares of hospitals and health insurers fall after the U.S. Congressional Budget Office forecasts that 14 million Americans will lose medical insurance by next year under a Republican plan to dismantle Obamacare.”

-Bill Trott, “Highlights: The Trump presidency on March 14 at 3:05 p.m. ET,” Reuters, March 14, 2017

6,873. 3/14/2017

POLITICS/TRADE DEALS/TRUMP AS PRESIDENT: “Trump’s nominee for U.S. Trade Representative tells U.S. senators he agrees with Trump’s call for an ‘America First’ trade policy with better-negotiated trade deals and stronger enforcement of U.S. trade laws.”

-Bill Trott, “Highlights: The Trump presidency on March 14 at 3:05 p.m. ET,” Reuters, March 14, 2017

6,845. 3/12/2017

TRADE DEALS/TRUMP AS PRESIDENT: “Republican lawmakers are showing increasing resistance to President Donald Trump’s trade agenda, worried that his plans could hurt exports from their states and undermine longstanding U.S. alliances.
The concerns indicate that the biggest threat to Mr. Trump’s trade policy—which emphasizes new bilateral deals and a tougher stance against countries blamed for violating trade rules—is coming from his own party. The opposition from Republicans, who control both chambers of Congress, stands to complicate Mr. Trump’s efforts to overhaul the North American Free Trade Agreement, or Nafta, and tackle alleged trade violations in China.
‘We want to support him on all those things; we’re not there yet,’ said Sen. Jim Inhofe (R., Okla.), whose state depends on aerospace and agricultural exports.”

-William Mauldin and Jacob M. Schlesinger, “Republicans Pose Growing Challenge to Trump’s Trade Agenda,” The Wall Street Journal online, March 12, 2017

6,806. 3/08/2017

ECONOMY/TRADE DEALS/TREASURY: “The Trump administration plans to press Japan, Germany and other nations with which the U.S. has large trade deficits, to buy more U.S.-made commercial and military products as a way to boost jobs and reduce the nation’s $500 billion trade deficit.
‘Any country we have a significant trade deficit with needs to work with us on a product-by-product and sector-by-sector level to reduce that deficit over a specified period of time,’ Peter Navarro, director of the White House’s National Trade Council, said in an interview with The Wall Street Journal. ‘That can be achieved, if they buy more of our products than they now are buying from the rest of the world, whether it’s chemicals or corn or whether, from a national security perspective, it’s submarines or aircraft.’…
Even if the U.S. trade deficit declines, that doesn’t necessarily mean economic growth will rise. Japan ran trade surpluses when its economy barely grew in the late 1990s and 2000s. The U.S., on the other hand, grew robustly in the late 1990s with large trade deficits.
Former Clinton administration Treasury Secretary Lawrence Summers said he worried that an overarching focus on trade deficits could hurt U.S. exports by magnifying trade frictions with other nations.
‘If you try to build a bridge based on the wrong laws of physics, it will collapse,’ he said. ‘If you try to build an economic strategy on ideas that have been discredited for hundreds of years, it will be ineffective.’
Mr. Navarro plays an important role in setting trade policy, but must battle for influence, especially as Mr. Trump fills out his team.”

-Bob Davis, “To Reduce Trade Deficit, White House Wants Partners to Buy American,” The Wall Street Journal online, March 8, 2017

6,709. 3/1/2017

FOREIGN POLICY/TRADE DEALS/WTO: “The Trump administration Wednesday [3-1-17] sent its strongest signal yet that it was prepared to buck the international trade order, including confronting the World Trade Organization, to assertively defend the economic interests and sovereignty of the United States.
In a mandated annual report to Congress outlining the president’s trade agenda, the administration repeated Trump’s warnings that the U.S. would take tough measures to combat dumping and other unfair practices by trading partners and ensure a level playing field.
The document, like Trump’s speech to Congress on Tuesday [2-28-17], was striking in its lack of specifics on what actions the president intended to take.
At the same time, the administration gave notice to the rest of the world that the U.S. would no longer tolerate distortions in global markets and that it stood ready to make a radical break from the past by emphasizing U.S. laws instead of deferring to global trading rules set by the WTO. The organization regulates trade and settles disputes among the more than 150 member nations, including the U.S.”

 – Don Lee, “Trump trade policy report suggests he might resist WTO system,” The Los Angeles Times online, March 1, 2017

6,669. 2/24/2017

FOREIGN POLICY/MEXICO/TRADE DEALS: “Mexico does not need financial aid from the United States, Interior Minister Miguel Angel Osorio Chong said on Friday, after President Donald Trump ordered a report on U.S. assistance to its southern neighbor over the last five years.
Mexican officials gave a cool reception to U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and Secretary of Homeland Security John Kelly during a visit on Thursday, and Osorio Chong’s comments are another sign of growing self-assurance in Mexico’s dealings with Trump.
A large part of U.S. aid to Mexico comes through the Plan Merida program, under which the U.S. Congress allocated $2.6 billion to security assistance between 2008 and 2016.
Of that, $1.6 billion had been disbursed by November 2016, according to the U.S. Congressional Research Service.
The review of financial assistance to Mexico was included in a Jan. 25 executive order on immigration security that mandated the construction of a border wall, leading to speculation that Trump wants to redirect the aid to pay for its construction.
‘When they realize what’s left of Merida, they will understand that it’s not even that significant,’ Osorio Chong told local radio.”

Frank Jack Daniel and Christine Murray, “Proud Mexico spurns U.S. aid under review by Trump,” Reuters, Feb. 24, 2017

6,653. 2/23/2017

JOBS/TRADE DEALS/TRUMP AS PRESIDENT: “At a meeting Thursday [2-23-17] with the country’s top manufacturing executives, President Trump made a puzzling statement about trade. ‘We don’t have any good deals. In fact, I am trying to find a country where we actually have a surplus — surplus of trade. Everything is a deficit,’ he said. ‘I actually said to my people: Find a country where we actually do well. So far, we haven’t found that country.’
Data from his own federal agencies tell a much different story. This chart shows the top 15 countries with which we run a trade surplus in goods. At the head of the list are Hong Kong, the Netherlands, the United Arab Emirates, Belgium and Australia.”

Jeff Guo, “Trump just said he can’t ‘find a country where we actually do well.’ We just did.,” The Washington Post online, Feb. 23, 2017

6,633. 2/21/2017

BUSINESS/TRADE DEALS/TRUMP BUSINESS: “Donald J. Trump has cast himself as the anti-globalist president.
But Donald Trump, the businessman, is a different story.
During the campaign, Mr. Trump’s organization continued to file dozens of new trademarks, in China, Canada, Mexico, the European Union and Indonesia, and one of his companies applied for trademark protection in the Philippines more than a month after the election, a review of foreign records by The New York Times showed…
The Times review of nine databases identified nearly 400 foreign trademarks registered to Trump companies since 2000 in 28 countries, among them New Zealand, Egypt and Russia, as well as the European Union. There are most likely many more trademarks, because there is no central repository of all trademarks from every country. The Trump Organization has been filing trademarks for decades, and has said that it has taken out trademarks in more than 80 countries.”

Danny Hakim and Sui-Lee Wee, “From Trump the Nationalist, a Trail of Global Trademarks,” The New York Times online, Feb. 21, 2017

6,520. 2/13/2017

CANADA/JUSTIN TRUDEAU/TRADE DEALS/TRUMP AS PRESIDENT: “President Donald Trump said he seeks only modest changes in the U.S. trade relationship with Canada, pledging that the two nations would continue to work together on cross-border commerce and security issues.
Following meetings on Monday with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, Mr. Trump said the U.S. would be ‘tweaking’ its trade relationship with Canada as it considers how the North American Free Trade Agreement could be adjusted. The remarks contrast with Mr. Trump’s harsh criticism of the current state of U.S. trade with Mexico.
‘We have a very outstanding trade relationship with Canada,’ Mr. Trump said at a joint news conference with Mr. Trudeau. ‘We will be tweaking it, doing certain things with both of our countries.’ “

 – Damien Paletta, Louise Radnofsky, and Paul Vieira, “Trump Plans Only ‘Tweaking’ of Canada Trade Pact,” The Wall Street Journal online, Feb. 13, 2017

6,381. 2/3/2017

TAXES/TRADE DEALS: “Countries charge U.S. companies taxes or tariffs while the U.S. charges them nothing or little.We should charge them SAME as they charge us!”

 – Donald Trump,, Feb. 3, 2017 10:07pm

6,228. 1/26/2017

MEXICO/TRADE DEALS/TRUMP POSITION CHANGES: “President Trump will call for a 20 percent tax on Mexican imports in the hopes of raising billions of dollars to help construct a controversial wall along the southern border of the United States — a move likely to ratchet up the tension between the two nations.”

 –Halimah Abdullah and Suzanne Gamboa,“Trump to Call for 20 Percent Tax on Mexican Imports to Pay for Border Wall: White House Spokesman,” NBC News, Jan. 26, 2017

6,178. 1/23/2017

TTP/TRADE DEALS/TRUMP MEMORANDA: Presidential Memorandum Regarding Withdrawal of the United States from the Trans-Pacific Partnership Negotiations and Agreement
It is the policy of my Administration to represent the American people and their financial well-being in all negotations, particularly the American worker, and to create fair and economically beneficial trade deals that serve their interests. Additionally, in order to ensure these outcomes, it is the intention of my Administration to deal directly with individual countries on a one-on-one (or bilateral) basis in negotiating future trade deals. Trade with other nations is, and always will be, of paramount importance to my Administration and to me, as President of the United States.
Based on these principles, and by the authority vested in me as President by the Constitution and the laws of the United States of America, I hereby direct you to withdraw the United States as a signatory to the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), to permanently withdraw the United States from TPP negotiations, and to begin pursuing, wherever possible, bilateral trade negotiations to promote American industry, protect American workers, and raise American wages.
You are directed to provide written notification to the Parties and to the Depository of the TPP, as appropriate, that the United States withdraws as a signatory of the TPP and withdraws from the TPP negotiating process.
You are authorized and directed to publish this memorandum in the Federal Register.”

-Donald Trump, “Presidential Memorandum Regarding Withdrawal of the United States from the Trans-Pacific Partnership Negotiations and Agreement,” White House Office of the Press Secretary, Jan. 23, 2017

5,016. 6/27/2015

BORDER/MEXICO/TRADE DEALS: “Only very stupid people think that the United States is making good trade deals with Mexico.Mexico is killing us at the border and at trade!”

 – 6/27/2015, Donald Trump,, 6/27/2015

5,013. 6/26/2015

BORDER/MEDIA/TRADE DEALS: “Anyone who wants strong borders and good trade deals for the US should boycott @Univision.”

 – 6/26/2015, Donald Trump,, 6/26/2015