T-MEC: officials discuss implementation of the Labor Chapter

Officials from Mexico, the United States and Canada discussed this Tuesday aspects of the implementation of the labor chapter of the USMCA.

It was the first meeting of the Labor Council of the USMCA, a meeting that was held virtually.

During the meeting, the Parties highlighted the importance of the Labor Chapter’s commitments and expressed their desire for an effective implementation of the Chapter.

Likewise, the Council discussed the internal mechanisms, institutions and procedures that each Party is using to advance in compliance with the provisions of the Labor Chapter.

In addition, the Council held in-depth discussions on various topics, including:

  • The ongoing implementation of the recent historic reform of Mexico’s labor law.
  • The Agreement’s requirement that each Party prohibit the importation of goods into its territory from other sources produced in whole or in part through forced or compulsory labor.
  • Key labor policies for migrant workers.
  • Areas of continuous and future cooperation and development of technical capacity.

Labor Chapter

In accordance with the free trade agreement between the three countries (USMCA), the Parties will establish a Labor Council (Council) made up of high-level government representatives, either ministerial or other level of their ministries (secretaries) of trade and work, as designated by each country.

On behalf of the United States, the following participated: Thea Lee, Deputy Under Secretary for International Affairs of the Department of Labor, and Joshua Kagan, Acting Deputy Trade Representative for Labor Affairs of the Office of the Trade Representative.

Rakesh Patry, Director General of International and Intergovernmental Labor Affairs, Ministry of Employment and Social Development, and Andrew McCracken, Director of North American Trade Policy, Ministry of Global Affairs, chaired the Canadian delegation.

Alejandro Encinas Nájera, head of the Labor Policy and Institutional Relations Unit of the Ministry of Labor and Social Welfare, and Ricardo Aranda Girard, General Director of International Trade Disciplines of the Ministry of Economy, led the delegation from Mexico.

The Council provided an opportunity for workers, employers, civil society organizations, and the general public to discuss matters related to the implementation of the Labor Chapter of the USMCA.