The sixth round of negotiations on the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) began in Montreal, Canada on January 22. This is the penultimate round that is scheduled to end on Monday January 29. There is both speculation that the U.S. could use these talks to announce that the Trump administration is triggering the six-month withdrawal clause in NAFTA or that the negotiations could extend past the July 1 election in Mexico. The outcome is unknown and difficult to predict at this time. The U.S. is turning up pressure on Canada and Mexico to radically alter the trade pact in favor of American interests with the Trump administration threatening to terminate the program if it cannot reach a conclusion that unilaterally benefits the States.
It is unknown at this time what would happen to the 15,000 TN visa holders and the 10,000 spouses and children of these professionals. TN visa is a NAFTA work visa that allows professionals of the United States, Mexico, and Canada to work in the three countries without the visa cap restrictions, renewal restrictions, or salary restrictions that the H-1B work visa poses. To learn more about the TN visa, please click here. At this time, employers are encouraged to consider alternatives for employees who would be affected in the event that labor mobility under the trade pact is restricted. Terminating the program would damage the workforce of the three countries considerably as H-1B work visa cap is already maxed out, last year alone 236,000 individuals applied for the 85,000 visa spots available. To discover more options for working in the United States, please click here.
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