Category Archives: Trade

Mexicans left behind by Nafta see hope with Trump

Al Jazeera –  Many Mexicans feel they can get behind: a renegotiation or cancellation of Nafta. Several national peasant organizations and labor unions have been fighting for the cancellation of Nafta’s agriculture chapter since negotiations started in 1990. Now that Donald Trump is in the White House, they see a rare opportunity to make that demand a reality.

EU, Mexico accelerate trade talks as Trump threatens to tear up Nafta

European Trade Commissioner Cecilia Malmstrom holds a news conference at the EU Commission headquarters in Brussels, Belgium. (Yves Herman/Reuters)
European Trade Commissioner Cecilia Malmstrom holds a news conference at the EU Commission headquarters in Brussels, Belgium. (Yves Herman/Reuters)

By Ben Chapman / Independent

The European Union and Mexico will speed up negotiations to seal a free trade pact, as U.S. President Donald Trump threatens to pull out of a deal with its Central American neighbor, hit the country with punitive border taxes and make it pay for a border wall.

The move has been triggered by a “worrying rise of protectionism around the world”, EU Trade Commissioner Cecilia Malmström, and the minister of economy of Mexico, Ildefonso Guajardo said in a statement on Wednesday.

“Side by side, as like-minded partners, we must now stand up for the idea of global, open cooperation,” the two said.

U.S. farm, food firms on edge over Trump trade war

Reuters – U.S. food producers and shippers are trying to speed up exports to Mexico and line up alternative markets as concerns rise that this lucrative business could be at risk if clashes over trade and immigration between the Trump administration and Mexico City escalate. Mexico is expected to import about 4 percent of the U.S. corn crop in 2016/1 and buys 7.8 percent of U.S. pork production.

Chipotle could be hurt by Trump’s war on Mexico

Business Insider – The tariff proposal, which the Trump administration walked back saying it was just one option being considered, could make goods from Mexico more expensive. That could pose a huge problem for restaurant chains like Chipotle that heavily rely on Mexican imports.

How a Corona beer gets from Mexico to U.S.

Reuters – Ordering a bottle of Corona beer at a bar in the United States is a simple proposition. Getting it there from its brewery in Mexico involves a complex, cross-border supply network that will likely get more complicated if U.S. president Donald Trump follows through on vows to renegotiate the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) or tax imports.

In Trump fight, Mexico has many ways to punch back

Washington Post – If the trade war is coming, how would Mexico fare? Mexico is not without leverage if this dispute escalates. Top economic officials have already said that Mexico would “mirror” any additional taxes or tariffs that the United States imposes. Former officials have said that Mexico could also tax corporate profits from the many American companies with operations in Mexico.

The dangers of a U.S.-Mexico trade war

WSJ – The situation between President Donald Trump and Mexico could get rather ugly. A recession in Mexico can backfire for the US – including bringing more of what the “great wall” is trying to prevent. Moreover, the supply chain running through Mexico’s factories is incredibly complex and could result in disruptions and price increases in unexpected areas. US refineries also will lose their key customer.

How trade shapes Trump’s world view

Washington Post – By cozying up to Russia, and in his disdain for NATO, President Trump appears to have flipped decades of U.S. foreign policy thinking on its head. It has left many experts puzzled, and plenty outraged.But for anyone trying to figure out Trump’s worldview, here’s a really interesting way of looking at things, courtesy of John Robb, who runs the Global Guerrillas blog and is an author and military analyst.

Robb argues that trade — rather than national security — dominates Trump’s foreign policy thinking, inverting decades of U.S. practice. By implication, that makes any country running a large trade surplus with the United States a direct competitor.

Economy minister says Mexico might leave Nafta if talks unfavorable

Mexico's Economy Secretary Ildefonso Guajardo Villarreal listens as Mexico's President Enrique Pena Nieto announces a plan to strengthen the economics for families on Jan. 9. (Carlos Jasso/Reuters)
Mexico’s Economy Secretary Ildefonso Guajardo Villarreal listens as Mexico’s President Enrique Pena Nieto announces a plan to strengthen the economics for families on Jan. 9. (Carlos Jasso/Reuters)

By Veronica Gomez and Alexandra Alper / Reuters

Mexico could pull out of the North American Free Trade Agreement if a renegotiation of its terms does not benefit Latin America’s second largest economy, Economy Minister Ildefonso Guajardo said on Tuesday.

“There could be no other option. Go for something that is less than what we already have? It would not make sense to stay,” Guajardo said when asked on local television if Mexico could pull out of the trade deal with Canada and the United States.

U.S. President Donald Trump has vowed to withdraw from NAFTA, which took effect in 1994, if he cannot renegotiate it to benefit American interests.

Trump formally withdrew the United States from the Trans-Pacific Partnership on Monday and said he would renegotiate NAFTA “at the appropriate time.”

Senior U.S. and Mexican officials will meet this week in Washington to discuss trade, security and immigration. Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto and Trump will meet at the end of January.

Trump to Sign Executive Order on Plan to Renegotiate NAFTA With Mexico, Canada

Trump blames Nafta for destroying America's manufacturing sector and called it "one of the worst deals ever.”
Trump blames Nafta for destroying America’s manufacturing sector and called it “one of the worst deals ever.”

By Kristen Welker / NBC

President Donald Trump is expected to sign an executive order as early as Monday stating his intention to renegotiate the free trade agreement between the United States, Canada and Mexico, a White House official told NBC News.

Eliminating the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), which was crafted by former President Bill Clinton and enacted in 1994, was a frequent Trump campaign promise.

The deal was intended to eliminate most trade tariffs between the three nations, increase investment and tighten protection and enforcement of intellectual property.

“We will be starting negotiations having to do with NAFTA,” Trump said Sunday at a swearing-in ceremony for his top White House advisers. “We are going to start renegotiating on NAFTA, on immigration and on security at the border.”

U.S. manufacturing exports to Canada and Mexico, the United States’ two largest export markets, increased 258 percent under the agreement, according to the website of outgoing U.S. Trade Representative Michael Froman, and the deal helped create a trade surplus in agriculture and manufactured goods.

Mexico braces for Trump assault on Nafta

Financial Times – Despite a good few weeks for Mexico — a successful oil auction; a $1.3bn investment by retailer Walmart; and a bond issue from state oil company Pemex that was six times oversubscribed — a dark, Donald Trump-shaped cloud is looming.

The US president-elect has vowed to renegotiate the North American Free Trade Agreement, or Nafta, that has turned its neighbour into a car, computer, TV and aerospace manufacturing powerhouse. The threat is a crackdown on reshoring to cheap destinations such as Mexico by slapping a 35 per cent tariff on goods imported back into the US by companies that shift jobs or plants abroad.

While Trump has dropped talk of scrapping Nafta outright, Latin America’s second-biggest economy is bracing for uncomfortable changes to a 22-year-old status quo that has transformed it into the US’s second largest trade partner behind China.

Mexico, China very different trading partners

Bloomberg – Although China and Mexico both trade a lot with the U.S., and have both been running significant trade surpluses with the U.S. for decades, that’s where the similarity ends. The China-U.S. trade relationship is spectacularly unbalanced, with a gap between goods exports and imports that exploded not long after China joined the World Trade Organization in 2001 and that, while it has subsided a bit since last year, is still of a scale never seen before “Chimerica” came into being.

Commerce secretary pick vows to eliminate “dumb trade”

CNBC – Wilbur Ross, President-elect Donald Trump’s choice for Commerce secretary said he wants to overhaul “dumb trade” deals that the U.S. has with countries around the world. “Believe it or not, Mexico has better treaties with the rest of the world than the United States has. We’re going to fix that,” Ross said as his nomination was being announced.