North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA)

In force since January 1994.

The North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), came into effect on January 1, 1994, creating the largest free trade region in the world, generating economic growth and helping to raise the standard of living for the people of all three member countries. By strengthening the rules and procedures governing trade and investment, the NAFTA has proved to be a solid foundation for building Canada’s prosperity and has set a valuable example of the benefits of trade liberalization for the rest of the world.

For more information, please see background information on the North American Free Trade Agreement.

NAFTA@20

Multilateral Agreements

  • Summary of Multilateral Agreements between Canada, Mexico and the United States
  • Text of the North American Free Trade Agreement
  • The Canada-U.S. (CUFTA) - The NAFTA superseded the Canada-U.S. Free Trade Agreement (CUFTA), which had come into effect five years earlier on January 1, 1989. At that time, Canada and the United States signed an historic agreement that placed them at the forefront of trade liberalization. For more information, please see the information page on the Canada-U.S. Free Trade Agreement.
  • North American Agreement on Environmental Cooperation (NAAEC) - The second parallel accord to the NAFTA, which also came into effect in 1994, is the North American Agreement on Environmental Cooperation (NAAEC), which established the Commission on Environmental Cooperation (CEC). The CEC is mandated to enhance regional environmental cooperation, reduce potential trade and environmental conflicts, and promote the effective enforcement of environmental law. The text of the North American Agreement on Environmental Co-operation is available on the CEC website.
  • North American Agreement on Labour Cooperation (NAALC) - The North American Agreement on Labour Cooperation (NAALC) also came into effect in January 1994 as one of two parallel accords to the NAFTA. The NAALC commits all three countries to close cooperation on labour issues and provides for the effective enforcement of laws relating to the protection of labour standards. In Canada, the provinces have significant constitutional authority over the enactment and enforcement of legislation as it relates to the protection of labour standards.
    The Canadian federal and provincial governments negotiated the Canadian Intergovernmental Agreement regarding the NAALC, specifying the means whereby Agreements with other countries could best be implemented in the interests of all Canadians. The text of the North American Agreement on Labour Co-operation is available on The Commission for Labour Cooperation’s website.
  • Tariff Elimination

Related Links

Contact Point

If you have questions or comments about this free trade agreement or the environmental and labour cooperation agreements, we would like to hear from you. Please contact the Department of Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development at the following address:

Trade Remedies and North America Trade Division (TNE)
Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development Canada
Lester B. Pearson Building
125 Sussex Drive, Ottawa, ON K1A 0G2
Fax: 613-944-3214
Email: re-enquiries-demandes.NAFTA@international.gc.ca