Mexico says ready to 'modernize' NAFTA with Trump


Mexico City (AFP)

Mexico is willing to "modernize" the North American Free Trade Agreement with US President-elect Donald Trump's incoming administration and Canada, but will not renegotiate the pact, the foreign minister said.

Foreign Minister Claudia Ruiz Massieu said NAFTA has "yielded great results" for the three nations, but that there is an opportunity to make it "more beneficial" to all.

"We are willing to talk about this with the new government and with Canada as well," Ruiz Massieu told CNN late Wednesday.

"We think it is an opportunity to think if we should modernize it, not renegotiate it, but to modernize it," Ruiz Massieu said.

NAFTA will be discussed with Trump's transition team in the coming months, she said.

President Enrique Pena Nieto announced on Wednesday that he and Trump had agreed to meet, possibly before the New York billionaire's inauguration in January.

Trump has vowed to renegotiate or rip up the 22-year-old free trade deal.

He has also angered Mexicans with his pledge to force Mexico to pay for a border wall and deport millions of undocumented migrants, whom he has called rapists and drug runners.

Two-way trade in goods between Mexico and the United States totaled $531 billion in 2015.

Ruiz Massieu said Mexico "believes in free trade" and the governments "have the challenge to make sure that the opportunities created by NAFTA are more inclusive and that more people in the three countries feel the benefit of this integration agreement."