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Administration Continues Advancement Towards Resolution of Mexico Trucking Dispute Retaliation

July 8, 2011

The Obama Administration took yet another step this week towards the final resolution of the long-running NAFTA dispute with Mexico regarding cross-border trucking access. Lack of U.S. compliance with NAFTA on this issue has resulted in tariffs being applied to many U.S. cheese exports to Mexico since last August.

The U.S. and Mexico announced on July 6th an agreement on the final details of a plan to put in place a long-haul cross-border trucking program that prioritizes U.S. road safety while simultaneously providing a path towards compliance with U.S. trade obligations to Mexico.

As part of that July 6th announcement, Mexico reported that, effective immediately, it would cut in half the level of all retaliatory tariffs on U.S. exports, meaning that the tariffs on targeted cheeses will drop from 20-25%, to 10-12.5%. This step provides an immediate measure of relief to U.S. exports while the Department of Transportation (DOT) works to evaluate and approve the first Mexican trucking carrier. Once that first carrier is approved for operation by DOT, which is expected in the coming weeks, the remainder of the tariffs on U.S. exports will be lifted by Mexico. NMPF continues to impress upon Congress the importance of not interfering in this process and to underscore that the pains that DOT is taking to ensure that upholding our trade commitments in no way compromises U.S. road safety.