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Mexico Views Expanded EU Accord, TPP as Possible Alternatives to NAFTA

LADB Article ID: 80273
Category/Department: Mexico
Date: 2017-04-26
By: Carlos Navarro

Mexico is pushing hard for the completion of a full free-trade agreement with the European Union (EU) this year, given the potential loss of some of its market in the US if President Donald Trump succeeds in his efforts to weaken or eliminate the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). Trump’s protectionist policies already led the US to withdraw from negotiations over the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), but Mexico is also pushing forward with that agreement as a means to help boost commercial relations with Asian countries. Both moves would also help diversify Mexico’s trade partners. Representatives from the EU and Mexico met in early April for the latest round of talks to expand and upgrade a free trade agreement that the two sides negotiated in 1999 and enacted in 2000. Mexico views the accord as a major step in reducing reliance on commercial relations with the US. A EU-Mexico free trade agreement could help expand a growing commercial relationship between the two sides. Trade between the EU and Mexico more than tripled from US$18.5 billion in 1999 to US$61.6 billion in 2016, according to statistics from the Mexican government. Mexico is also interested in maintaining momentum for the TPP to create trade and investment opportunities if Mexico loses some market opportunities in the US with a downsizing or elimination of NAFTA. Mexico was one of 12 countries that negotiated the TPP in 2015 signed the accord in 2016.

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