In response to President Trump’s Executive Order 13786 (see our update of April 3, “Executive Order Calls for Omnibus Report on Significant Trade Deficits”), the governments of Canada and Mexico have filed formal comments with the Department of Commerce ahead of the public hearing to be held on May 18, 2017.

While Mexico’s formal report is detailed, it notes:

The US trade deficit with Mexico is explained mainly by the way North American value chains are integrated. Mexico is the main supplier for many US industries, and this supplier relationship naturally creates trade deficits. Imports from Mexico enable US manufacturers to remain competitive in global markets, enhancing their ability to export to other countries and to provide American consumers with high quality goods at more competitive prices. The Mexican-US partnership strengthens both countries’ position in global markets and enhances our regional competitiveness to the benefit of workers, consumers and producers on both sides of the border.

The comments also note the strong ties and regional supply chains created under the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), and that “American manufacturing jobs depend on Mexican manufacturing jobs and vice-versa, since workers on both sides of the border work together in the production of goods to successfully compete in global markets.”

Canada’s formal report highlights the fact that the United States normally has a trade surplus with Canada and that “[o]ur trade is characterized by a high level of integrated production, with companies on both sides of the border using inputs from the other.” Further, the comments note that the U.S. relies on imports of Canadian raw materials and intermediate goods that ensure the competitiveness of U.S. manufactured products, and that the two countries have long cooperated to reduce impediments to trade.

To review other comments submitted for the record, visit and search for Docket ID: ITA-2017-0003; International Trade Administration.