USMCA for Shippers

What the USMCA Deal Means for Shippers

Is your business ready to comply with North America’s revised trade pact? 

After Canada, Mexico and the United States officially settled the updated terms of the USMCA deal in September 2018, the agreement went into effect July 1, 2020.

Read on to learn more about the differences between the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) and the USMCA.

Visit for details.

The USMCA stands for the United States-Mexico-Canada Trade Agreement, which replaces the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) effective July 1, 2020.

The agreement is also referred to as the Canada-United States-Mexico Agreement (CUSMA) in Canada and the Tratado entre México, Estados Unidos y Canadá (T-MEC) in Mexico. 

July 1, 2020. For merchandise entered into commerce before June 30, NAFTA rules will continue to apply.
Generally, no. All parties must comply with USMCA as of July 1, 2020. There will be a transitional period for automotive products under headings 87.01 through 87.08 for as many as three years and alternative staging regime options for as many as five years. 
The USMCA will be effective for 16 years, at which point the government may choose to extend it. The USMCA also requires a joint review every six years after entry into force.
No. There is no official certificate of origin requirement for USMCA, as was required under NAFTA.

Any document stating the goods’ origin is acceptable, including a commercial invoice or other transactional documents, provided the document contains the following nine pieces of information: certification of origin; certifier; exporter; producer; importer; description and harmonized system classification of the good; origin criteria; blanket period (if applicable); and authorized signature and date.

Learn more about the certificate of origin requirements

The value thresholds are as listed below:

United States
Unchanged from NAFTA at US$800

The customs duties limit increased to US$117 and taxes increased to US$50

The customs duties limit increased to CA$150 and taxes increased to CA$40

U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) is coordinating with the U.S. Department of Labor on the verification process of USMCA claims on automotive goods. The rules of origin for such goods include the new criterion of labor value content, which requires that a specified percentage of a vehicle’s value be derived from manufacturing facilities that pay an average wage of at least US$16 per hour.

The U.S. Department of Labor will assess the wage practices of the manufacturing facilities involved in the production of such vehicles and their components. This information will be used in CBP’s labor value calculation.

The USMCA requires new criteria for automotive goods that were not applicable under NAFTA, including:

Regional value
To be increased in stages from 62.5 percent to 75 percent across a three-year period.

Labor value
Forty to 45 percent of the value of the imported automobile must be sourced from manufacturing facilities where workers earn at least US$16 per hour. The U.S. Department of Labor assesses manufacturing facility eligibility, with CBP determining value of parts, the overall automobile and the overall labor value.

Steel and aluminum origin
At least 70 percent of a vehicle producer’s annual steel and aluminum procurement must originate from North America.

The USMCA contains new provisions to combat antidumping and countervailing duties evasion, commitments to ban the trade of goods that infringe on intellectual property or are sourced from forced or compulsory labor, as well as requirements intended to prevent the illegal seizure of wild flora and fauna (including timber).
Importers must maintain records for five years from date of importation. Exporters and producers must maintain records for five years from the date the certification of origin was completed.
Yes. The CBP’s USMCA Center includes communication directly from the agency, as well as insights from operations, legal and audit experts. For implementation instructions, compliance guidance and more, visit

Get expert USMCA guidance from our customs experts

For assistance tailored to your specific business needs, simply contact an AIT representative for connection to our global compliance or customs clearance teams. 

Contact us

The USMCA deal changes origin certification requirements.


Partner with customs clearance experts.