The North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) is an international agreement signed by the governments of Canada, Mexico and the United States that creates a trilateral trade bloc in North America. The agreement came into force on January 1, 1994. NAFTA aims to eliminate all tariff and non-tariff barriers to trade and investment between the United States, Canada and Mexico. The political gap was particularly large in terms of views on free trade with Mexico. Contrary to a positive view of free trade with Canada, which 79% of Americans called fair trade partners, only 47% of Americans thought that Mexico practiced fair trade. The gap between Democrats and Republicans has widened: 60% of Democrats thought Mexico was fair trade, while only 28% of Republicans did. That was the highest number of Democrats and the lowest figure ever recorded by Republicans in the Chicago Council survey. Republicans had more negative views on Canada than fair trade partners and Democrats.  A 2015 study showed that Mexico`s prosperity increased by 1.31% as a result of NAFTA tariff reductions and by 118% for Mexico`s domestic trade.  Inequality and poverty have decreased in the regions of Mexico most affected by globalization.  Studies from 2013 and 2015 showed that Mexican small farmers benefited more from NAFTA than large farmers.   After diplomatic negotiations in 1990, the heads of state and government of the three nations signed the agreement on 17 December 1992 in their respective capitals.
 The signed agreement had to be ratified by each country`s legislative or parliamentary department. Discussions made progress on a number of issues, including telecommunications, pharmacy, chemicals, digital commerce and the fight against corruption. But the way in which the origin of automotive content is measured has proved to be a sensitive point, as the United States fears an influx of Chinese auto parts. Discussions will be further complicated by a World Trade Organization (WTO) proceeding against the United States in December. Many critics of NAFTA saw the agreement as a radical experiment developed by influential multinationals who wanted to increase their profits at the expense of ordinary citizens of the countries concerned. Opposition groups argued that the horizontal rules imposed by nafta could undermine local governments by preventing them from enacting laws or regulations to protect the public interest. Critics also argued that the treaty would lead to a significant deterioration in environmental and health standards, promote privatization and deregulation of essential public services, and supplant family farmers in the signatory countries.