Mexico Oil Exports Up, Economy Seen Bouncing Higher in Fourth Quarter

11/20/2017 NGI

Mexico’s economy contracted an annualized 0.8% in the third quarter, partly because of two major earthquakes, but economists are predicting a bounceback in the fourth quarter. Among other things, oil exports increased by almost 21% in the first nine months from the same period of 2016, and overall industrial production is rising.

The consensus growth forecast for 2017 held steady in October at 2.1%, according to the Federal Reserve Board of Dallas. Petroleum exports improved, and employment growth remained strong, economists said in a monthly update issued last week.

Manufacturing exports rose 6.6%, and oil exports were up 20.9% in the first nine months of 2017. Mexico’s industrial production, which includes manufacturing, construction, oil and gas extraction, and utilities, grew 0.3% in August.

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Mexico’s Outlook in 5 Charts

11/20/2017 International Monetary Fund

The Mexican economy keeps growing, mainly thanks to its strong economic policies, even as the fate of the country’s trade deal with North America remains unclear. However, Mexico would still benefit from carrying out reforms for stronger and more inclusive growth. The main areas to tackle are inequality, corruption, obstacles holding back firms’ productivity, and tax collection to allow more room for public investment.

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Ongoing NAFTA talks could lead to ‘devastating’ economic fallout, ex-commerce secretary says

11/16/2017 CNBC 

Image result for carlos gutierrezThis expert says there is a ‘real risk; that NAFTA talks could fail  

The United States’ opaque approach to negotiations on the North American Free Trade Agreement could well lead to a “devastating” collapse of the treaty, former U.S. Secretary of Commerce Carlos Gutierrez told CNBC.

Trade representatives from the U.S., Canada and Mexico meet this week for the fifth round of NAFTA talks. However, the ongoing discussions belie an increasingly bleak future for the trade agreement, said Gutierrez, who is also the chair of strategic advisory Albright Stonebridge Group.

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Which States Would Be Hit Hardest by Withdrawing from NAFTA?

11/17/2017 U.S. Chamber of Commerce

flag pictureImagine the scene: The U.S. unemployment rate is climbing. Crops in the heartland are rotting. Manufacturers are moving abroad. Consumer prices are rising.

That’s the picture painted by Tom Donohue, President and CEO of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, in his recent column in The Wall Street Journal examining the increasingly precarious state of play in the effort to modernize the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA):

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Mexico Accelerates Fuel Opening to Jump-Start Investment

11/16/2017 Bloomberg

oil wellMexico is speeding up a countrywide liberalization of fuel prices by a month in a bid to kick-start lagging private investment.

Mexico’s energy regulatory commission, CRE, approved on Thursday bringing forward an end to government-set pump prices in the southeastern zone comprised of Campeche, Quintana Roo and the Yucatan, known as region five, to Nov. 30 from Dec. 30. Mexico will freely float prices by Nov. 30 in the rest of the country.

The move “sends a strong signal to the market” that Mexico welcomes new players in the sector formerly dominated by state-owned Petroleos Mexicanos, said Roberto Diaz de Leon, president of Onexpo, Mexico’s gasoline retailers association, speaking at an event in Mexico City.

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NAFTA talks resume Friday with tariff-free auto parts on the table

11/16/2017 Dallas News 

automobileMEXICO CITY — Officials for Canada, Mexico and the United States will renew talks here Friday, amid a cloud of uncertainty  and animosity that hangs over negotiations to revamp the North American Free Trade Agreement.

As the talks drag on, now expected to continue through March, the possibility of any real gains are likely to become even slimmer as elections loom for the three countries, particularly Mexico, which holds presidential elections in July. Crucial midterm congressional elections are in November in the U.S. NAFTA could muddy the campaign waters even more, experts say.

“The window of opportunity is fast closing in,” said Tony Payan, director of the Mexico Center at Rice University’s Baker Institute, which hosted a top Mexican delegation this week headed by Foreign Minister Luis Videgaray. “Even if Mexico makes important concessions, President Trump may not contain himself and declare victory by walking away from NAFTA, and that will put Mexico in a very difficult spot because for Trump to win, others have to lose. Mexico is in a real pickle. Elections are at stake here.”

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U.S. energy chief expresses confidence in NAFTA talks

11/14/2017 Reuters

Image result for rick perryHOUSTON (Reuters) – U.S. Secretary of Energy Rick Perry said on Tuesday he is confident that the North American Free Trade Agreement will be successfully renegotiated by the United States, Canada and Mexico.

Perry said that he expects NAFTA talks, currently underway among the three nations, will lead to a “good agreement, a fair agreement” during a Houston news conference with Mexican Secretary of Energy Pedro Joaquin Coldwell and Canadian Minister of Natural Resources Jim Carr.

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