Bye Bye to trade talks if US imposes tariffs

By Elliot Bullman

Economy Secretary says he will leave the table if US insists on duties or quotas

Mexico will not accept tariffs or quotas when renegotiating the North American Free Trade Agreement with the United States, the foreign minister said on Tuesday, the latest challenge to U.S. President Donald Trump’s proposals to erect trade barriers.

Portada Aranceles

“The moment they say, ‘We’re going to put a 20% tariff on cars,’ I get up from the table,” Guajardo stated.

The secretary stressed that Mexico would not be looking to scrap the North American Free Trade Agreement, or NAFTA, but if negotiations over the accord fail, it wouldn’t be an absolute crisis.

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Guajardo believes the agreement can be improved by adding themes such as digital commerce, telecommunications and some aspects of the energy industry that were not included in the 20-year-old pact.

Talks are expected to begin in June. The Economy Secretary hopes they will conclude in early 2018, ahead of Mexico’s presidential election and the mid-term elections in the U.S. that year.

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