Mexico’s economy secretary on Thursday proposed yet another round of talks with the United States on a dispute over Mexico’s energy sector.
Mexico hopes to stave off a full-fledged trade complaint under the U.s.-Mexico-Canada trade agreement.
The U.S. initially requested talks in July, but they have so far not led to any solution. The United States could demand an arbitration panel, and the dispute could end in trade sanctions on Mexico.
The United States says Mexico is unfairly favoring its state-owned electricity and oil companies over American competitors and clean-energy suppliers. Canada has also joined in that complaint.
U.S. Trade Representative Katherine Tai appeared willing to keep talking, but her office said she “underscored the urgency of prompt and meaningful progress in our ongoing consultations” at a meeting Thursday with Mexican Economy Secretary Raquel Buenrostro.
Buenrostro’s office said she “emphasized that Mexico wants to resolve the differences in talks, without the need of resorting to an arbitration panel, while guaranteeing national sovereignty.”
Buenrostro “proposed establishing tri-national working groups that could meet during December and the start of January” in order to have the deal ready before an expected meeting of the leaders of Canada, Mexico, and the United States on Jan. 9-10. Trade disputes threaten to cloud that gathering.
Source: El Financiero