Trump hails NAFTA progress, Mexico eyes general deal by end

Jeannette Daniel
July 10, 2017

Trump met today with President Enrique Peña Nieto of Mexico during the G20 Summit in Hamburg, Germany.

The meeting was the first between the two leaders since last August, in the heat of the campaign season.

Trump offered no details about what issues he and the Russian leader had discussed, describing them only as "various things". Trump said he thinks the US and Mexico have "made very good progress".

According to a spokesman for Mr Peña Nieto, however, Mr Trump did not broach the subject during their ensuing talks.

Trump's election and his early days in office sent U.S. -Mexico relations to a new low due to his threats to apply tariffs to Mexican-made goods and a plan to build a wall on the southern U.S. border to keep out illegal immigrants.

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When journalists began filing out of the room, Trump was asked if he still wanted Mexico to pay for his proposed border wall. Trump has accused Mexico of stealing United States jobs, and complex talks over renegotiating the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) are due to begin on August 16.

Former Mexican president Vicente Fox Quesada's even turned the airwaves blue during a TV interview, when he told the then presidential hopeful: "Mexico is not going to pay for that f***king wall".

Disputes over migration, Trump's border wall - which Mexico has repeatedly said it will not pay for - and his claim that free trade with Mexico costs jobs in the United States, have strained relations between the two neighbours. The two spoke on the phone instead, but agreed they would not speak publicly about the wall at the time. Nieto turned his head toward Trump, seemingly in disbelief.

Trump, who met with Pena Nieto during the campaign past year, insists that even if USA taxpayers have to cover the costs upfront, Mexico will eventually be forced to reimburse the some way.

Other reports by My Hot News

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