May 3, 2019 / 3:37 PM / 20 days ago

Kudlow: White House to work on USMCA enforcement amid Democrats' request

White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow speaks to reporters at the White House in Washington, U.S., May 3, 2019. REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The White House will work on stronger enforcement mechanisms for its replacement NAFTA trade deal in response to requests from House Democrats, U.S. President Donald Trump’s economic adviser Larry Kudlow told reporters on Friday.

The Trump administration is pushing Congress to pass the new United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA), which would replace the 25-year-old North American Free Trade Agreement.

Democrats, who control the House of Representatives, have said the trade agreement must address concerns over enforcement. On Thursday the House’s top Democrat, Speaker Nancy Pelosi, told reporters that the deal must include the enforcement provisions in the bill itself and not as side legislation.

Democratic lawmakers also insisted that Mexico must protect labor rights. On Monday, the Mexican Senate approved a reform that enshrines the right of Mexican workers to organize and grants them more control over their contracts.

Reporting by Jeff Mason, Dave Lawder and Makini Brice; Writing by Susan Heavey; Editing by Chizu Nomiyama and Phil Berlowitz

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