US launches NAFTA renegotiation countdown20 May 2017 AFP, Washington
US President Donald Trump's administration on Thursday launched the 90-day countdown to renegotiating the three-nation North American Free Trade Agreement.
US Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer formally notified Congress of the intent to revamp the pact with Canada and Mexico, which accounts for about $1 trillion in annual trade.
Talks will begin no earlier than August 16, 2017, he said in a statement.
During the required 90-day period, USTR will consult with "Congress and American stakeholders to create an agreement that advances the interests of America's workers, farmers, ranchers, and businesses," he said.
During the campaign, Trump vowed to scrap NAFTA altogether, saying it was a disaster for US workers. His repeated complaints that bad trade deals cost American jobs gained him support among working class voters, who helped lift him to the White House.