Clever triangulation on China’s business antics


A special clause in the new US-Mexico-Canada trade agreement would give Washington a near-veto over any attempt by Canada or Mexico to agree to a free-trade deal with a “non-market economy”, in what analysts have said is a major threat to China’s position in the global trading system.

The United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA), finalised on Sunday to replace the 24-year-old North America Free Trade Agreement, stipulates that any of the three parties to the deal has the right to be informed about any negotiations on a free-trade agreement with a “non-market economy” at an early stage, and can review any such deal signed by another member.

If one of the three were to sign a free-trade deal with a non-market country, either of the other two would have the right under article 32.10 to terminate the trilateral USMCA with six months’ notice and form its own bilateral deal on the same terms.

Despite repeated Chinese demands that they do so, the US and European Union have refused to classify China as a “market economy” – a technical distinction in the World Trade Organisation framework that would reduce the ability of Washington and Brussels to impose trade sanctions on Beijing.

Although the new stipulation – which was not included in the trade deal between the US and South Korea agreed last month – does not name any specific country, analysts understand it to be aimed at China.

With the power to review and then impede or effectively veto a possible free-trade deal between China and Canada or Mexico, the US can block potential “backchannels” for Chinese products to enter US markets via its neighbours, and gain a significant advantage in weakening Beijing’s negotiating power in future trade talks.

We’ll limit comments on the fellow who is the target of the religious war being waged by the Snowflakes, the Media and the Tenured. But something very interesting is happening. Maybe there’s some fun in fighting back, like holding SNL hostage. Or deriding the idiot who has the non-job of being BBC Comedy Commissioner. Something is happening if even low key sticks in the mud like McConnell and especially Graham now enjoy big-time arguing and even yelling. And Darth Tweeter made it all happen. Yay!

One Response to “Clever triangulation on China’s business antics”

  1. feeblemind Says:

    Re Triangulation

    Shrewd. Very shrewd.

    Re McConnell and Graham.

    Count me very surprised with their new behavior. Perhaps this is partly a result of McVain no longer being there to wield his influence?

Leave a Reply