July 2, 2018 / 7:54 PM / 7 months ago

Mexico should hit back on any US auto tariffs-AMLO adviser

MEXICO CITY, July 2 (Reuters) - If the United States slapped duties on Mexico’s auto exports, the government should retaliate against U.S. businesses, a top economic adviser to president-elect Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador said on Monday.

Graciela Marquez, Lopez Obrador’s designee for economy minister, said the new administration should push back against “protectionist” moves by the United States on trade, moving in lock step with the outgoing Mexican government.

Trump is trying to exert leverage over Mexico and Canada in his bid to rework the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), and last month kicked off a trade spat with tariffs on steel and aluminum. That prompted swift retaliation from Mexico.

The United States has also started a trade investigation into auto imports that could lead to hefty tariffs. Marquez said Mexico would not simply passively accept such measures.

“So I think we would have to take measures to raise tariffs in strategic sectors,” she told Reuters in an interview. (Reporting by Dave Graham; editing by Michael O’Boyle)

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