BERLIN, Germany.- Mexico’s president has said at a trade fair in Germany that he’s optimistic about reaching a deal to overhaul the North American Free Trade Agreement. President Enrique Peña Nieto and German Chancellor Angela Merkel on opened the annual Hannover Messe fair, where Mexico is this year’s guest country.
Both welcomed a preliminary agreement reached Saturday between the European Union and Mexico to update their nearly 20-year-old trade deal.
Mexico faces a challenge with the United States and Canada in overhauling NAFTA. About threequarters of Mexico’s exports go to the U.S.; roughly half its imports come from there.
Peña Nieto said: “We have optimism, as well, that we’re going to be concluding the renegotiation (and) modernization of the North American Free Trade Agreement ... ensuring benefits for all its partners.
” The president of the European Commission (EC), Jean Claude Juncker, celebrated the “mutually beneficial” trade agreement reached by the European Union and Mexico, a country he called a partner “willing to open and fair trade rules.
” According to an EC statement, Juncker said that the result of the agreement shows that it is a “winwin” process, since Mexico and the EU worked together to achieve it.
“We did it as partners who are willing to discuss to defend their interests and at the same time are willing to commit to meet their expectations,” he said.