September 5, 2017 / 9:13 PM / 10 months ago

Mexico economy minister sees common ground on energy in NAFTA talks

MEXICO CITY (Reuters) - The United States, Mexico and Canada are largely in agreement on issues related to the energy sector, Mexico’s economy minister said Tuesday, as the second round of talks to modernize the North American Free Trade Agreement comes to a close.

Mexico's Economy Minister Ildefonso Guajardo addresses the media to close the second round of NAFTA talks involving the United States, Mexico and Canada at Secretary of Economy headquarters in Mexico City, Mexico, September 5, 2017. REUTERS/Edgard Garrido

Speaking at a press conference, Mexican minister Ildefonso Guajardo said the countries are still discussing whether to devote a separate chapter to energy in the agreement, or whether to weave it in across the board.

That issue should be settled by the next round of talks, he added.

The three countries wrapped up the second round of talks to modernize NAFTA on Tuesday, building on the momentum from the first round in Washington two weeks ago.

The ministers said negotiators will meet for a third round of talks in Ottawa from Sept. 23-27 as they race to rewrite the accord by early next year to avoid conflicts with 2018 election cycles in Mexico and the United States.

Reporting by Dave Graham; Editing by Frank Jack Daniel

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