Mexican president says confident that US will negotiate on tariffs

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Lopez Obrador said Mexico would not engage in any trade wars with the United States, but noted that his government had a "plan" in case Trump did apply the tariffs to ensure the country was not impoverished.

Mexico's president and the top US business lobbying group called on President Donald Trump to back down from a threat to impose punitive tariffs on Mexican imports, in a dispute over migration that could shock Mexico's economy.

On Saturday, Lopez Obrador voiced confidence on the upcoming talks. He added that Mexico was willing to "reinforce" existing "measures without violating human rights".

Beginning with a series of tweets late Thursday, just hours after U.S. Vice-President Mike Pence's whirlwind trip to Ottawa to push the trade agreement forward, Trump said he wants Mexico to stop migrants from Central and South America from reaching the U.S. border.

A major Mexican delegation led by Foreign Minister Marcelo Ebrard will discuss the dispute with US officials in Washington on Wednesday, and Lopez Obrador said he expected "good results" from the talks, and for a deal to emerge.

Shares of USA automakers with facilities in Mexico tumbled in early morning trading Friday.

Underscoring the interconnected nature of the US and Mexican economies, the USA -based Beer Institute said most Mexican beer sold in the United States is made from US -grown barley and hops.

"For decades, the United States has suffered the severe and risky consequences of illegal immigration", the president said in a followup statement issued via the White House.

Following Trump's comment on Mexico tariff, auto industry shares took a heavy tumble on Friday (May 31st) alongside Wall St., while Germany's multinational lender, Deutsche Bank had warned that a 25 percent tariff on all imports of Mexico would result in a $23 billion hit, which could eventually cripple the industry and cause major uncertainties.

On Thursday, U.S. President Donald Trump announced that the United States will impose 5 percent tariffs on all Mexican imports on June 10 and gradually lift the tariffs only if "the illegal migration crisis is alleviated through effective actions taken by Mexico". Until "the illegal immigration problem is remedied", tariffs will continue to rise monthly, going as high as 25% by October 1.

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Apprehensions at the USA border with Mexico have surged in recent months, though Mexican data also show more deportations and detentions at Mexico's southern border with Guatemala, mostly of Central Americans trying to reach the United States illegally.

In contrast to previous spikes in arrivals, recent groups have included a large number of children, prompting US officials to scramble to support families and children traveling without parents - some of whom are seeking asylum.

Mexico's president said Saturday he thinks USA officials are prepared to negotiate on President Donald Trump's threat to use tariffs as a tool to fight illegal migration across the border. The president also prompted the longest government shutdown in US history when he insisted on funding from Congress for a border wall.

Trump's announcement of the new tariffs came on the same day Mexico began the formal process of ratifying the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) on trade.

The new proposed tariff on cars built in Mexico would threaten consumers' pocketbooks in a more direct way. "If this is put in place, we must respond vigorously". In early May, Trump imposed tariffs on $200 billion of Chinese goods entering the USA, and last week rolled back tariffs on steel and aluminum between Canada and Mexico.

"By mixing two things - immigration and now, just lately, drug flow, with trade - I think it confuses the issue", said Jorge Guajardo, a senior director at the Washington-based worldwide trade consulting firm McLarty Associates.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau introduced the bill that would do it in Canada earlier this week.

The new trade agreement doesn't kick in until it's approved by lawmakers in all three countries.

Tit-for-tat tariffs between the United States and China have already been weighing on Japanese automakers. "We are interested in seeing the Mexican government act tonight, tomorrow".

On Friday, Mexico's top farm lobby said Lopez Obrador should target agricultural goods from states that support Trump's Republican Party if the American leader carries out his threat to punish Mexico for the migrants heading north. "And this will increase the closer the (U.S.) election gets".