New North American trade deal makes Mexico more attractive to R&D, says top negotiator

The new USMCA trade agreement will benefit Mexico “if it plays its cards right” because of cost advantages, said Jesus Seade, President-elect’s chief negotiator, in an interview with Reuters.

Although the official acknowledged that the new deal increases protectionism, he said those restrictions, especially on the auto industry, will bring more production and engineering into the region from Asia and Europe.  

“Usually I don’t like protectionism, it’s bad. But this is protectionism of a region,” Seade mentioned, adding that the deal “forces companies to do more business in North America, more engineering, a lot of which is done in Germany or Korea. If they are going to do it in North America, where are they going to do it? The cheapest place is Mexico,” he said. You can read the whole article here.

US seeks quotas on Mexican steel

Also, during the interview with Reuters, but in a separate article, Seade said that the U.S. is seeking to impose quotas on Mexican steel exports as part of a negotiation to remove metals tariffs.

“I have had a couple of calls with Lighthizer, and it is along those lines, to manage volumes etc with Mexico and with Canada,” Seade said, declining to give further details.

MexicoNow

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