Mexico is close to resolving its dispute with the United States over steel and aluminum tariffs without quotas but hopes Canada can reach a similar agreement before completing it, a senior Mexican official said on Wednesday (May 15).
Jesus Seade, Mexican deputy foreign minister for North America, told Reuters by telephone that a deal to remove the so-called Section 232 tariffs was “very close” but he wanted Canada to be in the same position in its negotiations with Washington.
“What we’ve been talking about for a week,” he said, “is eliminating the 232 without any quotas,” noting that it was “very possible” Canada could sign up to a “similar” deal.
Sudden movements in future trade could be handled via a “consultation and monitoring system,” he added, noting Mexico still had the option of sealing a deal without Canada.
U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin also expressed optimism about a resolution to the steel dispute, but a top Canadian official avoided direct comment on that possibility.
“I think we are close to an understanding with Mexico and Canada,” on resolving the tariffs, Mnuchin said at a U.S. Senate Appropriations subcommittee hearing. He did not provide any details about the potential agreement.
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