Secretary of Economy says Mexico has “overconfident” in the US

Economy Secretary Ildefonso Guajardo said today that Mexico has “trusted too much” that it would have an insured market in the United States, but now is forced to build a new scheme of opening that will benefit from the renegotiation of the agreement With the European Union (EU).

In a speech in the Spanish Chamber of Commerce, the secretary said that the renewal of the agreement is “very important to broaden the horizons of liberalization.”

So far, he considered, it was an “effort” for Mexican exporters to look for other markets, including those in Europe, since they had “a safe market in the north” to place their products, for example, in foods such as Avocados from Michoacán.

In addition, some European markets “are very controlled” by marketers who “generate very, very hard conditions in the purchase”.

The question of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) by the American president, Donald Trump, who came to describe the agreement as the “worst” in history, is a “warning call that Mexico should not waste”.

Guajardo declared himself “very optimistic” regarding the Mexico-EU relationship and pointed out that, after finishing the third round of negotiations to update the bilateral framework in early February, next week the country will receive Trade Commissioner Cecilia Malmström.

With this, both parties will make “an evaluation of where we are in the negotiation in order to unlock high points and to accelerate” the talks, which are expected to be concluded before the end of the year.

On the other hand, Guajardo acknowledged before the businessmen present at the meeting that the negotiation with the United States. On NAFTA, in which Canada also participates, will not be “honey on flakes”.

Referring to Trump’s claims that the United States has been harmed by NAFTA while Mexico has benefited, the secretary remarked that the renegotiation “can not begin with the principle that only one of the three partners has won”.

“No one wants to sit down and negotiate at a table from the defendants’ chair,” he said.
Regarding the accusation that the Latin American country has removed jobs from the Americans, he said that this “is only to see a small fraction of the history” because Mexico “has been part of the solution of the competition with Asia”, and not the problem.

Guajardo argued that any agreement reached with the northern neighbor will not be able to contain trade through quotas or tariffs.

He recalled that NAFTA, in force since 1994, currently requires an update, as there are areas that were not present in the negotiation at the time, such as intellectual property or electronic commerce, and the energy sector presents a completely different picture.

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