Published: Sun, June 09, 2019
Markets | By Otis Pena

Trump halts trade war threats as Mexico agrees 'strong measures' on migrants

Trump halts trade war threats as Mexico agrees 'strong measures' on migrants

Under the deal, Mexico acknowledged and agreed to expand its policy of taking back migrants from violence-riven Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador as the U.S. processes their asylum claims.

The deal did not include a key USA demand that Mexico accept a "safe third country" designation that would have forced it to permanently take in most Central American asylum seekers.

Under the agreement, Mexico will "offer jobs, healthcare and education" to those individuals.

"Additionally, the United States and Mexico commit to strengthen bilateral cooperation, including information sharing and coordinated actions to better protect and secure our common border", the State Department said in a joint declaration.

Schumer (D-NY) predicted that Trump would cave and find a reason to revoke his tariff threat towards Mexico.

"Thanks to the support of all Mexicans, we were able to avoid tariffs on Mexican products exported to the U.S.", tweeted Lopez Obrador, who since his election previous year has tried studiously not to antagonise Trump.

The Trump administration has continually pushed for Congress to address the crisis at the border. Through June 5, 10,393 mostly Central Americans have been sent back to Mexico since the program started in January.

Mexico sends about 80% of its exports to the United States, giving Trump ample leverage to put pressure on López Obrador over a surge in migrants to the U.S. border.

However, shortly after the president's announcement, several Republicans applauded the deal, including some who had publicly rebuked Trump for announcing the tariffs.

Any sizable increase may also be hard to achieve.

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The tariffs, announced by the Trump administration last week after weeks of threats from the president to implement them, would have imposed a 5 percent tax on goods imported from Mexico. And he had appeared poised earlier Friday to invoke an emergency declaration that would allow him to put the tariffs into effect if that was his final decision, according to people monitoring the talks.

U.S. and Mexican officials held a third day of talks at the U.S. State Department trying to hash out a deal that would satisfy Trump's demand that Mexico dramatically increase its efforts to crack down on migrants. "This is being done to greatly reduce, or eliminate, Illegal Immigration coming from Mexico and into the United States". Trump threatened to keep raising import duties on Mexican goods up to 25% unless Mexico acted to stem what he has called an "invasion".

Numerous Republican Party members opposed the tariff and urged Trump to either consider them further or postpone them.

"The governments of the USA and Mexico will work together to immediately implement a durable solution", it said.

Mexico also agreed to accept more migrants from the US.

Talks between the United States and Mexico intensified in recent days.

However, the deal fell short of a key USA demand that Mexico accept a "safe third country" designation that would have forced it to permanently take in most Central American asylum seekers.

The White House did not immediately respond to requests for comments about Lamy's comments or the lack of mention of expanded purchases of USA agricultural goods by Mexico in the joint declaration.

The deal was also confirmed in a tweet by Mexico's Foreign Secratary Marcelo Ebrard.

Trump in recent months has embraced tariffs as a political tool he can use to force countries to comply with his demands - in this case on his signature issue of immigration. But business leaders in America had warned against starting a tariff war.

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