US, Mexico hit a rough patch as countries prepare for trade renegotiation

World Today

The Mexican government is denying allegations that U.S. President Donald Trump threatened to invade Mexico in a phone call with Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto last Friday.

This comes after today’s announcement by Mexico that it has started 90 days of consultations with business leaders ahead of talks with the U.S to renegotiate the North American Free Trade Agreement in May.

CGTN’s Martin Markovits reports.
Follow Martin Markovits on Twitter @MartinMarkovits

US, Mexico hit a rough patch as countries prepare for trade renegotiation

US, Mexico hit a rough patch as countries prepare for trade renegotiation

The Mexican president announced the beginning of 90 days of consultations with Mexico's business community in order clarify the countries position on NAFTA ahead of talks scheduled with U.S. officials in May.
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U.S. and Mexico relations have hit another rough patch after a leaked transcript of a phone call was released by the Associated Press which appeared to show President Donald Trump threatening to send troops to Mexico to stop “the bad hombres down there.” The White House has not responded over the media report. The Mexico government published a letter on Twitter calling the allegations false.

This phone call was supposed to heal wounds after a series of public spats between President Trump and Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto over Trump’s executive order to build a wall along the border and his plan to renegotiate the North American Free Trade in favor of U.S. workers.

On Wednesday, the Mexican president announced the beginning of 90 days of consultations with Mexico’s business community in order clarify the countries position on NAFTA ahead of talks scheduled with U.S. officials in May.

Today, President Trump reiterated his long standing opposition to NAFTA and said he hopes to speed up talks to renegotiate the trade deal.

There is a lot at stake for both countries if NAFTA is renegotiated. Two-way trade is estimated at nearly $1.4 billion. More than 80 percent of Mexican exports go the U.S., its biggest trading partner.

But if the trade deal falls apart or gets weakened, Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto has said he would pursue separate bilateral agreements with other countries like Argentina, Australia and Brazil and strengthen business ties with Asia to rely less on the United States.