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By Sanjeev Kumar
Founding Attorney

How might Texas business owners be affected by the renegotiation of NAFTA?

As the United States and Mexico seek to renegotiate the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), Texas business owners are taking their own steps to ensure trade between the U.S. and Texas remains strong. Several of Texas’ large business associations have formed a coalition aimed at protecting trade between the U.S. and Mexico. Our Austin, Texas business law lawyers discuss the new Texas-Mexico Trade Coalition and how your Texas business could be affected by changes to NAFTA.

Texas’ Strong Trade Relationship with Mexico

Texas ranks as the number one state for exports, and Mexico is its top partner for trade. Texas traditionally has benefitted from NAFTA. Since NAFTA went into effect in 1994, its exports have grown far faster than exports in the rest of the United States. Texas is one of the largest producers of several products that Mexico desires, including oil and gas, electronics and computers, transportation equipment, and energy products.

The tremendous growth in exports from Texas to Mexico has created thousands of jobs across the state and fueled the state’s powerful economy. With such a substantial industry at stake, it is no wonder that Texas business owners are afraid of reforms to NAFTA which may be coming under President Trump. Trump vowed to abolish NAFTA during the campaign, but has since softened his stance. As of now, it is not clear what the final NAFTA agreement will look like once negotiations are complete.  

The Texas-Mexico Trade Coalition

Fearing changes to come to NAFTA, Texas business associations have formed the Texas-Mexico Trade Coalition.  The Coalition will launch soon and includes the Texas Association of Business, Borderplex Alliance, and the Texas Business Leadership Council. The Coalition strives to call awareness to the importance of bilateral trade with Mexico and to urge political leaders in Texas to fight for the strengthening of NAFTA, rather than tearing it down. Texas business owners should closely follow the renegotiation of NAFTA and take steps at a local level to continue to grow trade relations with our neighboring nation of Mexico. 

 

About the Author
Sanjeev Kumar is the founder and principal at the Kumar Law Firm, which provides a wide range of legal services to entrepreneurs and business owners in the area of business & corporate law and intellectual property along with related areas of interest to clients such as business succession planning, wealth preservation through estate planning, and alternate dispute resolution.