Mexico preparing for new trade setup with US

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With or without the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), Mexico-US trade will continue.

“Mexico is bigger than NAFTA and there’s life after NAFTA,” Mexico’s foreign minister Luis Videgaray told reporters on the plane over to Vietnam, according to a transcript released by the government.

“If we don’t succeed, we have to be prepared. Trade with the United States will continue under different rules,” Videgaray added, referring to World Trade Organization rules.

Videgaray admitted that his country is making preparations for a post-NAFTA scenario in the event additional talks collapse.

Four rounds of talks between the United States, Canada and Mexico to renegotiate the deal have proved inconclusive so far.

US President Donald Trump has threatened to abandon the 23-year-old trade deal accusing it of being one-sided and replacing American jobs with cheaper labor in Mexico. In the talks, Washington negotiators are seeking cuts the US trade deficit with Mexico and protect American jobs.

But some 14 million US jobs depend on trade with Mexico and Canada, according to the US Chamber of Commerce, making the deal popular among American industry. AFP/rw: WJG

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