Susan Cary-Hanson just wants a seat at the table for small businesses like hers when it comes to trade negotiations. The co-CEO and owner of PGC Solutions, a small manufacturer that makes custom parts for companies including Deere and Bobcat, has concerns about how potential changes to the North American Free Trade Agreement being pursued by the Trump administration might disrupt her company's exporting to Mexico and Canada.
Edina, Minnesota-based PGC is 67 years old and exports around the globe. Exports to Mexico and Canada represent just under 10 percent of its business, with 1,600 parts sent out for 55 different companies.
"My biggest concern is that I don't know how this will impact me as a small manufacturer and how this is going to affect our end customer," said Cary-Hanson. "But I do know that shipping to Mexico or Canada, our customers are not going to take a price increase."
Talks to renegotiate the trade deal are wrapping up their fifth round Tuesday, with leaders from the United States, Mexico and Canada continuing to discuss potential changes to the decades-old agreement. A March 2018 deadline is fast approaching. President Donald Trump has called NAFTA the "worst trade deal" ever signed in the past and, as commander-in-chief, has vowed to renegotiate it.