The renegotiation of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) created a fair amount of anxiety for us immigration lawyers. What would they change? Would caps be put in place on renewals? Would certain professions be removed? Would the work permit options simply be scrapped? With all of the posturing of President Trump, these were all possible outcomes. On September 30, 2018, we learned the fate that awaited NAFTA….
Fortunately, all parties were able to recognize that the free flow of business personnel was in the best interest of all three member countries. When the dust settled, Chapter 16 of the newly branded United States Mexico Canada Agreement (USMCA) was left untouched. We can expect the USMCA to become law some time in early 2020.
Most business immigration lawyers, such as myself (and our clients) let out a significant sigh of relief.
Although some of us carried faint hopes that these negotiations would provide an opportunity to update the list of professionals to include digital media occupations that didn’t exist back in 2004 when NAFTA was created. We will continue to settle for the status quo.
So now that NAFTA has not been scrapped, I want to take this opportunity to remind all of you Canadian, American, and Mexican business owners why the USMCA is so important for the movement of cross-border personnel and why it would have truly sucked to see it go.
In this episode, Billie Young an ex-immigration officer like me and member of my immigration Team here at Stringam LLP, joined me to share our “Top 5 reasons why every Canadian, American, and Mexican company will love the USMCA just as much as they did the old NAFTA“.
- Business Visitors – working in Canada without a work permit
- After-Sale Service Providers – service contemplated in original sales contract
- Professionals – hands down…the best work permit option
- Intra-company transferees – ideal for cross border transfers
- Traders / Investors – less useful; however, can fill some gaps left by the others
[Tweet “Top 5 reasons immigration lawyers love the USMCA“]
- Mark and Billie’s firm – Stringam LLP: https://www.stringam.ca/
- If you need help with obtaining a work permit under NAFTA (USMCA) you can book a consult here: https://www.stringam.ca/immigration-mark-holthe/
- Text of the proposed United States Mexico Canada Agreement (USMCA): https://ustr.gov/trade-agreements/free-trade-agreements/united-states-mexico-canada-agreement/united-states-mexico
- NAFTA (USMCA) Immigration Policy (Canada): https://www.canada.ca/en/immigration-refugees-citizenship/corporate/publications-manuals/operational-bulletins-manuals/temporary-residents/foreign-workers/international-free-trade-agreements/north-american.html
- NAFTA Professional’s List: https://www.nafta-sec-alena.org/Home/Texts-of-the-Agreement/North-American-Free-Trade-Agreement?mvid=1&secid=8fd98e3e-4495-43a8-ba47-4a6955d6b5db#Ap1603.D.1
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