The Honourable Ed Fast, Canada’s Minister of International Trade, Penny Pritzker, the United States’ Secretary of Commerce, and Ildefonso Guajardo Villarreal, Mexico’s
Secretary of Economy, today issued the following statement:
"We, the ministers responsible for international trade and commerce for Canada, the United States and Mexico, held a joint meeting in La Jolla, California, today, where we were participating in the North American Competitiveness and Innovation Conference. The conference is bringing together government and business leaders to discuss the economic and commercial advances that we have made in the 20 years since NAFTA [North American Free Trade Agreement] was implemented and how we can build on that progress to continue growing our economies and creating jobs.
"A generation ago, with NAFTA, Canada, the United States and Mexico established a new global standard for economic integration. We have achieved thriving commercial relationships and deeply connected supply chains. The North American economy, which is one of the most competitive economic platforms in an increasingly competitive world, remains strong, and our workers, businesses and communities continue to thrive.
"By demonstrating that increased trade drives job creation and economic growth, we have set a valuable example globally and have built a solid foundation upon which North American competitiveness can continue to be enhanced to the benefit of all our citizens.
"We pledge to continue helping our businesses grow and our workers succeed through enhanced regulatory cooperation and coordinated efforts to facilitate increased trade through many initiatives, including the ongoing Trans-Pacific Partnership negotiations. We have committed to ensuring that our competitive advantages as a continent are maintained and enhanced.
"We agreed to work on a constructive agenda to strengthen our trade and economic relationship. We are committed to crafting a road map that both promotes prosperity across the NAFTA region for the next 20 years and maintains our position as the most competitive region in the world."
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