DETROIT — National Automobile Dealers Association 2019 Chairman Charlie Gilchrist announced the organization’s support for the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement at the Automotive Press Association luncheon in Detroit Tuesday.
“Congress should pass USMCA to preserve competition in the auto industry, and to enable dealers to continue providing affordable vehicles to millions of Americans without interruption — and they should do so expeditiously,” said Gilchrist, who represents new-car dealers in Northern Texas on NADA’s board.
In urging passage of USMCA, Gilchrist underscored the global nature of auto manufacturing and the integrated supply chains that have arisen from favorable trading relationships between the U.S. and its partners in international trade.
“We cannot escape, nor should we try to undo, the reality that the U.S. auto industry is built on a favorable trading relationship with our two biggest trading partners.”
“NAFTA has greatly enhanced the global competitiveness of the U.S. auto industry, and this edge in competitiveness has allowed dealers to offer our customers more choices at better prices,” Gilchrist said. “We cannot escape, nor should we try to undo, the reality that the U.S. auto industry is built on a favorable trading relationship with our two biggest trading partners — Canada and Mexico.”
If the USMCA is implemented, he added, it will solidify a favorable trading relationship with Canada and Mexico and ensure the continuation of tariff-free exchanges of vehicles and auto parts across North America, the largest source of vehicles sold by U.S. dealers.
Gilchrist praised the Trump administration for the framework it has negotiated with Canada and Mexico.
“The U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement that the President has negotiated will maintain auto production and distribution in North America. It will preserve the global competitiveness of the U.S. automotive industry. And it will enable dealers to continue providing affordable vehicle options for American consumers,” Gilchrist said.
And he stressed that approval of USMCA will also reduce the threat of any future tariffs on vehicles and parts by exempting two of the largest sources of vehicle and parts sold by franchised dealers in the U.S.
“We need to take advantage of the USMCA agreement. The USMCA is [a] win for us. Let’s make it happen.”